LUCC votes to recognize MLK Day, outlines election plans

Peter Gillette

LUCC unanimously voted to request that, next year, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day be recognized as a national holiday at Lawrence.This weekend’s LUCC officer election, and the request for students to serve on two prominent Trustee and faculty committees, respectively, rounded out the meeting.

The King recognition would not add any time off to the academic calendar, but rather shift the time off second term known as “Dean’s Day.”

Since “Dean’s Day” holds no particular significance, the Multicultural Affairs committee, chaired by Daniel Weingrow, recommended this shift in order “to celebrate the contributions of a man who taught the virtuous ideals of courage, truth, justice, compassion, dignity, humility, and service, which Lawrence University promotes.”

Weingrow initially brought the proposal to LUCC in December, but members asked him to research how the holiday is recognized at equivalent schools.

Weingrow stated that there is no clear consensus among schools, and many are not even in session during the time of the observance, the third Monday in January.

“Dean’s Day” was created with the shortening of reading period by the faculty, with an extra day being added to another portion of each term. The name holds no special significance.

“It started as a humorous offering by one of the faculty members, and nothing more creative came up,” said Dean of Students Nancy Truesdell.

The most significant effect the change would have on the calendar, if adopted, would be to shift the time off to a relatively early spot in the term.

The members of the Polling, Elections, and Leadership Committee helped to iron out the logistics of LUCC officer elections, which will be held Saturday through Monday.

On Saturday and Sunday, members of the PEL and other LUCC members will conduct the election at Downer during all meal times.

On Monday, students may vote at the Science Hall atrium from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; the conservatory from 1-4:30 p.m. (subject to change); Briggs from 1-3:00 p.m.; Lucinda’s from 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.; and Downer from 5-7:30 p.m.

The PEL will conduct elections Monday with a laptop, in order to allow for multiple voting locations. The laptop will connect to a list of students, protecting against voter fraud.

Current president Cole Delaney stressed that vote administrators should do everything possible to eliminate electioneering of any kind.

“We will take people to J-Board if necessary,” he said. “Don’t be afraid to take down names,” (of people standing around polling places in order to suggest to others how to vote). While he said he didn’t anticipate any problems, he added, “Elections bring out the worst in people.”

Earlier, Delaney announced that two committees were in need of students. The faculty’s Calendar Task Force is in need of students who will be on campus for the next five terms, through next year. The task force seeks to research and explore the possibility of switching to the semester format.

Because the task force could take longer, the committee would prefer freshmen or sophomores over juniors, but juniors can still be nominated.

The Trustees’ Presidential Search Committee will choose students to sit on the committee from a slate provided to them from the Committee on Committees. Search Committee members would have to be on campus third term this year, and the first two of next.

Truesdell sent an email seeking Search Committee nominations to students Jan. 8. Nominations are due to the LUCC box at the info desk by Jan. 31.

Treasurer Tariq Engineer also alerted the group to a discrepancy in the finances between LUCC’s figures and those of the Campus Activities office. Until the CA office resolves the difference, which should not take long, LUCC will not allocate.