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Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

Marshall University's Student Newspaper

The Parthenon

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Students Voice Concerns to Provost

Courtesy of
Provost Avinandan Mukherjee

Student Government Association members recently had the chance to discuss increased enrollment and scheduling conflicts at the University with Avinandan Mukherjee, provost and senior vice president of Academic Affairs, on Tuesday, Jan. 23, in the Memorial Student Center.

Attendees convened over pizza and refreshments to share and listen to positive aspects of the University, as well as things the University could potentially improve on.

The meeting began with introductions of each attendee, followed by updates from Mukherjee on University happenings.

An increase in enrollment is one of Marshall’s biggest achievements as of late, Mukherjee said.

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“There has been a 20% growth in metro students,” he said. “This is extremely important since we reduced the metro tuition rate.”

In addition, Mukherjee said production for a $45 million cybersecurity building is underway.

Carl Mummert, assistant provost for Graduate Studies, described the future building’s architectural details, as well as its special features.

“Tentatively, the building should have four floors, cyber labs and student spaces,” Mummert said. “We are aiming for it to be the East Coast hub for cybersecurity.”

However, Mukherjee also said there are aspects of the University he aims to improve.

He said he wants to work on advertising the University to out-of-state students.

In addition, Mukherjee said he is looking forward to progressing the Marshall for All, Marshall Forever plan.

“It is a big, ambitious project that is coming together,” Mukherjee said.

Meanwhile, student attendees also had the opportunity to express their concerns.

For example, one attendee said they had concerns about academic advising in their respective college.

Another student spoke about scheduling conflicts due to limited section offerings of first year seminar.

Likewise, biomedical engineering student Isaac Raines voiced issues he has witnessed over his time at

Marshall, such as experiencing difficulties registering for classes.

“There is confusion on which classes to take,” Raines said. “There are two different course schedules shown online, and neither of them are the current one.”

Furthermore, Raines said there is currently a new undergraduate research portal that is not being utilized.

“I wanted to bring this to the provost’s attention because it is a fantastic resource that is actually the result of a SGA resolution,” he said.

Regardless of these challenging aspects, Raines said he is grateful for

Mukherjee’s willingness to hear out student concerns.

“I think it is a great thing,” Raines said. “Different departments sometimes need help, so I am happy we have them.”

Like Raines, Alyssa Hudson, SGA business manager and press secretary, said the meetings with Mukherjee have improved Marshall for the better.

“I think that it is really something special,” Hudson said.

She went on to say, “The feeling of being both listened to and understood is something that has blossomed since Brad D. Smith’s presidency,”

“We have seen a lot of upper-division faculty come down and see what gripes we have,” Hudson said.

Hudson said it has been a great experience connecting with the provost, while also bettering the Marshall community.

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