You recently ran an article on the front page of your paper titled “WZRD 88.3 Back In Business”. We in the WZRD Collective object to this article on the following grounds: for one thing, it is wrong. WZRD is not back in business. What happened, as the article goes on to illuminate, is that Director of Student Leadership Development Veronica Rodriguez read a letter she wrote, addressed to Matt Specht, Acting Assistant Vice President of Student Involvement, in a public forum. She then passed out copies of this letter to some of the attending members of WZRD and to reporters for the Independent.
As far as we are concerned, this letter has no bearing on the status of the WZRD radio station, nor the WZRD student organization, whose members were presented with allegations of vague charges and locked out of our club facilities back on June 29th of this year. The “review” processes subsequently created by University staff, stipulate that the committees—the Charter and Rules Committee of the Council of Clubs, and the Radio Station Review Committee, would submit their recommendations to the Student of Leadership Development and Vice President of Student Affairs offices, and then decisions would be made concerning what was to be done, based on their findings.
We believe it was an error for Ms. Rodriguez to publicize what should have remained a private recommendation from her office to Mr. Specht’s office. There has been no official decision made about the status of our student organization nor has any decision been made concerning the status of the radio station as of this date.
We in the WZRD Collective do not believe that the OSLD has any authority to “require” student organizations to rewrite their Bylaws, or change their policies or practices, particularly without any official finding of any problems with those polices, practices or Bylaws. The students of NEIU should ask themselves the following question: Do you really want to accept the idea that the Office of Student Leadership Development can now set policies and run your student organization? Without any finding of wrongdoing? Is that any way to develop student leadership?
The Charter and Rules Committee report submitted to the OSLD contained no findings of guilt on any of the charges in the original Memo from Sharron Evans, nor any finding of problems with WZRD’s charter or rules, which is their only purview. Therefore, there is not even any basis for a decision that any changes need to be made in WZRD’s Bylaws, policies, procedures or the authority of its officers.
We categorically reject all of the stipulations contained in this letter from Veronica Rodriguez to Matt Specht as unreasonable and unnecessary. We will be happy to meet with the Council of Clubs to discuss suggestions for improvements about how our organization conducts its mission, and about improving our relationship with the NEIU student body, without interference from NEIU staff, if they are amenable to this idea.
Respectfully yours, Peter Ali Enger