Last week the Yale College Council announced two task forces that will convene during the semester, one of which will discuss topics relevant to student-athletes while the other will address Yale-New Haven relations.
In a Jan. 30 email to members of the undergraduate community, YCC Task Force Director Peter Hwang ’18 announced the two task forces and solicited applications — due one week later -— from students interested in serving on either advisory group. The groups will enable students from both inside and outside of the YCC to collaborate on highly specific and important issues of interest over the course of a semester, Hwang wrote in his email. According to Hwang, the task forces will evaluate the selected topic, consider potential solutions for identified issues and author a report summarizing their findings.
“During the first semester, we selected the task forces based on issues that Yale College Council has not worked extensively on in recent history. The same standard was used for this semester’s task force selection,” said YCC President Peter Huang ’18. “Both Yale-New Haven and student athletics are issues that we hope to explore in collaboration with our peers.”
Last semester, the YCC commissioned task forces addressing transfer student policy, disability resources and cultural centers relations.
With regard to the Yale-New Haven Task Force, Huang said the YCC is hoping to understand what students would like to see in terms of additional Yale-New Haven programming offered by the administration. For student athletics, Huang said, the YCC wants to gain a more nuanced understanding of the challenges facing student-athletes. He added that while certain issues such as academic scheduling for student-athletes have been discussed before, the YCC “needs to further explore other student-athlete concerns.”
According to a description of this semester’s task forces contained within the task force application form, the Student Athletics Task Force will examine the relationship between student athletics and the undergraduate population at large.
More specifically, the task force will explore the academic resources and accommodations available to student-athletes, suggest ways to improve the social integration of student-athletes into residential college life through changes to facilities and dining policy and compare student-athletes at Yale with those of its peer universities.
Carol Finke ’18, co-president of the Yale Student Athlete College Council who will sit on the task force, said that she is excited to be working with the YCC on the task force. She said the main concerns for student-athletes at Yale are general mental and physical well-being, overall academic experience, dining hall hours and overall integration in the student body, adding that these are the areas the YCC task force seems to be highlighting.
The Yale-New Haven Task Force will analyze existing programs and organizations that encourage outreach into the New Haven community, examine the accessibility of student jobs and internships in New Haven and suggest new initiatives to change student perceptions of New Haven and its neighborhoods, according to the description contained in the task force application form.
“The task force could be used as a resource to disseminate, showcase and highlight all of the great work that is being done to continue fostering our strong town-gown relations,” said Karen Peart, a spokesperson for the University.
The YCC meets every Sunday at 1 p.m. in Phelps 207.