Looks like after a week of taking flack in the media, SPU chose this week to speak up. Sometimes colleges and universities aren’t the best on being able to quickly respond to the media.
SPU Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Les Steele sent an e-mail to the school hoping to explain the hullabaloo, giving reasons for their actions to stop allowing Haven, the school’s un-official LGBTQ discussion group to reserve private space. Dr. Steele explains publicly what Jeff Jordan told our law class somewhat privately last night: Haven is not entirely innocent here, which has not been mentioned as often in the news. The group was not timely with a response for a statement of purpose, they tried to schedule space outside of Dean Jordan, and were basically not as communicative as leaders in times past. This is one of the pitfalls with leadership structures in student groups. Almost every year, clubs have a new leader. Some years are better than others, and there can be a some continuity of goals and leadership or entire breakdowns of reason. I’m sure most of us in Student Affairs have seen this happen.
Now SPU is trying to meet somewhere in the middle because of pressures both internal and external. As it stands right now, the school seems to be framing the problem as a lack of overall sexuality programming and discussion, of which Haven will be included in. Some will think this goes too far, some (most assuredly in Seattle) will think it doesn’t go far enough. As things continue to unfold, we’ll keep you updated.
SPU Faculty have sent an e-mail asking for an increase of sexuality programming today. See more here.