After a year of planning and organization, students at the Extension School have established a Student Affairs Council with the hope of unifying the diversified student body.
The six-member council, which held its first organizational meeting on January 29, seeks to reinforce the Extension School's aim of providing a "premier non-conventional education," according to Jeffrey M. Siskind, president of the council.
In addition, the council plans to give particular attention to student interests by making extra-curricular activities available to the student body.
Assistant Director of the Extension School John Adams attributed the slow start of the council to the diversity in the student population. Students enrolled in the school range in age from their teens to their 80s, with some holding down full-time jobs that make organization difficult.
Adams said he sees the council not as a platform for protest but rather as a means for the student body to become a more cohesive group through organized social activities.
But some students have already expressed dissatisfaction with the council's exclusive make-up. The council's by-laws stipulate that officers of the council must be seeking a degree at the school. Currently only 5 percent of the school's 1100 students are working towards a degree.
John Pistelli, a student who is seeking to create an alternative student council, criticized the new body as "unrepresentative of the student body and elitist."
The council plans to hold its first general meeting sometimes in April but has not yet specified a date.