By Gerard Fiorenzaiii
It is essential to foster an environment whereby all students within the Adelphi community can feel safe, as well as voice their thoughts or concerns without fear of rebuke. The Office of Community Concerns and Resolutions was instituted to do just that. Established in August 2021, the office serves as a means of aiding the needs of students, as well as resolving issues via guiding students towards the right resources for further assistance. Some of the issues and complaints they oversee include discrimination, harassment and sexual misconduct. The Delphian reached out to Allison Vernace, chief of Community Concerns and Resolution, about what to expect from the office.
Vernace said that one of the many goals for this office is to support successful and comprehensive communications between students and administrators. “I recognize that listening to feedback is critical in learning where increased clarity and communication are needed, particularly around policies and subsequent processes that students may encounter. To support this goal, I will be working to create a web-based resource that is clear and informative that outlines the appropriate channels for complaint resolution, making it more accessible for our community,” she said.
Among her goals are learning about the current processes for handling concerns and getting to know the students and staff.
“I will also be focusing on ensuring that policies are accessible and readable while also ensuring transparency and effective communication around our concern resolution processes,” she said. “I will achieve this by visiting student organization meetings to hear about the students' experiences with and perceptions of Adelphi's concerns resolution procedures. By learning more about the campus community and student experiences and needs, I'll be able to work closely with campus partners to improve Adelphi community members' experience with concerns resolution.”
The reaction from some students about the new bridge of communication between the student body and the administration is positive. Tyler Masure, a junior political science major said, “Establishing such an office would most definitely create more channels of communication between the student body and the Adelphi administration.”
But Masure also had suggestions for the office to present infrastructure problems to the Adelphi administration. “In the wake of the horrible [recent] rainstorm, many areas around campus were completely flooded. This blocked off several paths around campus, preventing students from accessing the places they needed to go.”
Kenneth Hernandez, a sophomore serving as the public relations manager for Adelphi’s Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) sees the potential for this office. “I believe it’s important for every student to feel safe and welcome at Adelphi. There should be no room for racism, sexism, homophobia or any other kind of discrimination. As a student coming from many marginalized identities, it is important for students such as myself to have their voices heard.”
Students can contact the Office of Community Concerns and Resolutions at 516-877–6864 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.