5/7/12 Ask Charlotte

Week of 5/7/12

Question: Could all the organization web pages, such as Hilltops and HCAB be updated? If you go to Hilltops' web page, it still has all the info from 2010, with most of the contacts having graduated by now.

Answer: This is a very good suggestion, and has been passed along to Student Affairs.

Question: Why is there no fire pit at the townhouses? I realize that there is one at Van Ess, but that is for their building. It is also stated online that fire pits are supplied for the students' use as an alternative to grills and so forth.

Answer: Per Residential Life, there was a fire pit at the townhouses until their renovation. However, students have access to the fire pits across campus; they just need to confirm their use with the appropriate Residential Life professional staff member (the Van Ess RD, Wilder RD or professional staff member at Hilltop/Oyaron).

Question: How come I can't view my grades online at any moment in time, so I know what I have in a course? I went the whole semester not truly knowing my official grade. The online communication and blackboard system needs improvement, and professors need to post grades from all the assignments, so we are not in the dark about what our grades. What are solutions to this?

Answer: At this point it is completely up to each professor whether to post grades online throughout the semester. If your professor is not one of those who posts ongoing grades, I suggest that you make an appointment to meet with him or her in person to discuss your grades and your progress.

Question: There are some people who should NOT have GEB puppies. They do not take care of the dog and are ruining it for the puppy, themselves, the program and also people on the waiting list of which there is a long one. All they care about is "oooh I got a puppy, isn't it so cute?" Not acceptable. Any way there could be interviews or something before someone gets a dog or not a background check but honestly all you have to do is look on Facebook sometimes!
Also why are the German shepherds not allowed even though GEB does them too?

Answer: Many thanks to Peter Blue for the information below. As you can see, the process of becoming a puppy raiser is extensive. If you have specific concerns, it is always best bring them directly to the attention of the Residential Life Staff, or to Peter Blue, or to Joy Hawksby at Guiding Eyes for the Blind, as Facebook is not the primary source of information for everyone (particularly for those like me who are ‘virtual' beings without access to a Facebook account).

There is a very precise path through GEB to apply to receive a Guiding Eyes puppy to raise, plus a concurrent one at the college.

Student puppy raisers must be approved through Residential Life for the college, independent of the GEB process. Students start by meeting with Zach Brown to complete the required contract. First year students may not be puppy raisers. There is a limit of around 10 pups at one time being raised by resident students at Hartwick College. There is a waiting list, which one must remember changes slowly, as it takes over a year to raise a puppy.

For Guiding Eyes, one has to submit an application (and have it approved). It is rather extensive, usually includes an interview and required references. Also available on the Guiding Eyes website is a description of key components of raising a pup and the responsibilities involved. In addition all Guiding Eyes raisers agree to and sign a puppy raising agreement.

Once a GEB application is approved, one must complete a pre-puppy placement class with Guiding Eyes. Once the pup is placed, raisers must attend weekly classes and quarterly evaluations with the GEB staff in Oneonta.

It is true that some people should not become puppy raisers. It is a big responsibility, lasting well over a year with around-the-clock responsibility. That said, it is extremely rewarding for the right people.

The vast majority of Guiding Eyes' pups are Labs. German Shepherds have a different temperament and can be more challenging to raise. Guiding Eyes is very careful about matching pups to raisers for the best outcome for the program. There are not a lot of German Shepherds in the program to begin with, and GEB will match dogs with the best chance of succeeding in the environment they will be raised in.

Question: Why does this school have to cost SO ridiculously much? We are not getting our money's worth at all! It would be great if there was something that stated exactly where all our money went and what we are spending every year. Do it.

Answer: The monthly ‘Conversation with the President' provides a wealth of information regarding how money is spent at Hartwick in order to provide a quality education for students. The next ‘Conversation' will take place on May 17 at 3 p.m. in Anderson Theater. I suggest that you attend these regularly, as I believe you would find many of your questions answered.

Question: Why is there no equestrian team for males? There are seven male teams and 10 female teams. There are a few of us males who have talked to the coaches over the years, but they are unwilling to make a team.

Answer: Per Kim Fierke, the equestrian team was started from a Title IX premise of adding opportunities for women. The contract with Hunter's Rein is based on an agreement that allows our women's team a predetermined number of hours of access to the facilities as well as to the horses.

If there is a group of men who are interested in equestrian, they would be allowed to investigate this opportunity through the clubs and organizations on campus. Like every other student, they would be able to seek Student Senate approval and funding. They would also need to meet the requirements set forth by the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA).