On February 29, Union College board of directors and trustees collaboratively made a decision on a long-time discussion topic. There were numerous takes on the issue, but overall, the campus administrative leaders decided to move forward in their efforts to make Union a more progressive campus. Without further limitations of publication, it’s a privilege to announce the integration of genders in Culver Hall above the Ortner Center. Efforts to begin this integration will commence after the conclusion of summer classes and full integration will be seen at the start of the 2018-2019 academic school year.
This development will still have its limitations, of course. The separating wall of Culver will be taken down and students in this residence hall will have neighbors of the opposite gender. However, limitations to this progressive decision include that males and females may not share the same room, thus keeping with Adventist standards. Additionally, students must be 21 years of age, in senior standing by credits, have maintained positive social standing with the deans during their entire time at Union college and must have been a student for at least one semester prior to admission into the integrated Culver residency.
Kim Canine, Vice President for Student Services at Union, commented, “We believe this will be a good opportunity for students getting ready to move into the ‘real world’ to have the experience of living in an apartment setting while still allowing them to remain on campus. The hope is that by giving these students the opportunity to live as ‘free adults’ in a controlled setting, they will experience less culture shock after graduation when moving into the real world.”
While the administrative majority are in agreement with Canine’s stance, some students are a little uneasy about this decision. Racquel Amich, sophomore international rescue and relief major and a current Rees Hall resident assistant explains, “I feel like it will be awkward, but it is a step forward, kind of, in Union going towards its liberal side.”
Many other students are excited for this opportunity, however, and many more believe it is a step in the right direction for Union. “This is fantastic! Finally, I’ll get to see what it’s like living in an apartment setting while still having the comfort of being so close to the Dick Building, where most of my classes are, and the cafeteria. I definitely feel like Union made a good choice and I’m thankful that they are trusting us with this responsibility,” exclaimed April Folley, a junior business administration major.
One thing is for sure, there is some division on this issue, but the changes this decision will enable are exponential.
Kayla Miller is a junior studying nursing.