The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Resolution aims to alter general education requirements

A majority of Student Senate supported a resolution supporting the elimination of some general education subcategories because they felt it could improve UW-Eau Claire’s graduation rate and it illustrated the liberal arts standard better on Monday.

GE requirements have been highly contested in lieu of the Blugold Commitment’s push to increase four-year graduation rates, with GE reform.

The resolution, recommended by the University Liberal Education Committee, is one potential resolution to GE reform. It states that the current subcategories are “unnecessary, as the larger categories efficiently require students to study fields outside of their chosen major.” The final vote stood at 19-9-1.

The two writers of the resolution, Sen. Jake Bernardy and Academic Affairs Director Mark Morgan, said by supporting the ULEC’s decision to eliminate the subcategories it would help to better simplify the GE requirements and allow students to delve deeper in to subjects they are more interested in.

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“The more you restrict what they can take, the more you restrict what they learn,” Morgan said. He emphasized that it doesn’t remove the students’ ability to take the breadth of classes still but only increases their ability to take classes more in depth of their interests.

The subcategories that would be eliminated are under categories II, III and IV, according to the resolution, because it is “in the best interest of UW-Eau Claire’s Liberal Education.” They would be keeping the subcategories under category I because the separation is too great between the English and math aspects of the category.

Senate debated for more than an hour on whether the elimination of the subcategories would hinder the basic ideals of a liberal education.

Sen. Paydon Miller voted in favor of the resolution but had some initial concerns about the effectiveness of this particular method to solve the problem.

“What we’re looking at here is a liberal arts education and it’s making all of us more well rounded,” he said. “I think this is using an axe to kill a fly and it could defeat the purpose of why people come here in the first place.”

Environmental Endeavors Commission Director Ben Ponkratz said he was in favor of this resolution and that it is in keeping with the current track the university is on to reform the system.

“It’s a heads up for the university that students are frustrated,” he said. “I personally think having a resolution doesn’t stop (students) from taking a variety of classes but can really help them graduate on time.”

Next, the recommendation will be reviewed by the Academic Policy Committee of University Senate before being considered by the full body.

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Resolution aims to alter general education requirements