Gabriel Sistare, Editor-in-chief
Cathy Kramer, dean of student life, is reviewing and revising College protocol for intervening in situations that call for off-campus support in Student Life. Kramer, along with the College’s counseling staff, was motivated to rethink College protocol by an event involving a first-year student and the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Department. The event occurred outside of Sunderland on Tuesday, March 9.
Kramer noted that since it is sometimes the College’s habit to operate informally, often no procedural continuity is established.
Kramer wants to maintain the privacy of the student but issued an email to the campus community acknowledging that people were upset and concerned about the event.
Specifics regarding the incident are vague, but in a separate interview Kramer noted the problem was that the Student Life staff and Public Safety did not anticipate the Sheriff’s Office arriving so soon. This led to some confusion among Student Life staff.
A proposal that will prevent similar situations from happening in the future is being written by Kramer and the College’s counselors.
Kramer said that the situation on March 9 required outside support for which the Sheriff’s Office was called. Kramer’s email asserted that the situation was not handled in a way the College anticipated.
In conversation, Kramer could not elaborate more completely on the topic because of confidentiality issues.
However, Kramer did say that Public Safety and the Student Life Office were in communication with each other before and during the incident.
Kramer guessed that the reason the Sheriff’s Department arrived so quickly was due to the Department’s close proximity to campus.
She noted that it is College protocol to use the least intrusive method to deal with issues similar to the event on March 9 and “work up” to more stringent measures.
The proposal, which suggests measures which will hopefully mitigate situations like this from occurring again, is not yet written.