Busy Collins weekend for me. The Sustainable Food Committee met on Friday with John Galuska. John teaches a course for SPEA titled “Farming the City” and leads a summer course in Jamaica: “Roots, Fruits, and Jamaican Ecologies.” He’s also the director of Foster International. We mostly talked about his one-acre farm just south of Bryan Park. Maybe we can arrange a visit in the spring. High point of the culinary offerings, I’d say, was the asparagus risotto. Now that the weather is becoming marginally more spring-like, we’re planning a foray up to the campus garden next Friday. Meet on the veranda at 4 if you’re interested. Finally, the CSFC, like Arts Council, BOEP, Student Govt. etc., will soon be looking for new officers for next year. Let me or one of the current co-chairs know that possibility appeals to you. Co-chairs menu plan, promote, shop and cook. The hoped-for garden coordinator leads groups to the Campus Garden work sessions.
BOEP had a lively discussion on Sunday. I reported on some course issues: my conveyance of the Board’s lack of enthusiasm about a faculty-proposed course and the sad story of a grad student instructor who was pressured by his adviser to give up his Collins course in order to work as a course assistant for that adviser, only to be subsequently denied by the department (after we’d already given away his spot). That really shouldn’t happen, but IU grads don’t have a union or other pressure group to address injustices of this sort. We also discussed the proposed full-color pricetag on The Pipe & Barrow. Apparently this discussion (or lack of discussion) has dragged on long enough now that such it will be. But it is certainly an issue to take into consideration in the upcoming Fee Committee (and BOEP) discussions about the budget.
For whatever reason, the issue of sexual abuse has impinged more than usual on my consciousness of late. A friend of mine, now in her 30s, blogged about her experience of being raped in high school last week (the first time she had spoken publicly about it), and I also came across a HuffPost piece titled “Why Are So Many Boys Leaving High School Thinking Rape Is Funny” (2/10/2014). The article includes the shocking estimate that “between 20-25% of women and 3% of men will experience an attempted or completed sexual assault in college.” That’s one woman in 4 or 5! If we apply that figure to the Collins population it comes to over 50 women. Equally troubling are the many anecdotes related in the article revealing a true rape culture among American male youth (though as we have seen recently, e.g. news from India, the US is far from alone in this). I’d like to think that Collins is a haven immune from these attitudes and behaviors, and while I’m sure that Collins is a safer place than most, I also know we have problems too. So to my fellow men let me just say: read the article and don’t be assholes.
Professor of History
Director, Collins LLC
24 February 2014