MoCo’s Drastic Email Changes Ignite Campus Complaints

Last year, I wrote an opinion piece for The Comenian addressing Moravian College’s email situation, because students were receiving dozens of emails daily, and the time it took to go through the emails was quite consuming.

In an email sent to students on Jan. 25, President Grigsby explained that Moravian College’s email policy had changed. Now, all students need to use the Moravian College app when they want to announce campus events. His email also included information regarding a Google form that allows student clubs and organizations the opportunity to include their event in a “weekly email events calendar” that will be sent out on Monday mornings.

Just once a week? On Monday morning? Apparently, that is the response from the administration on how to best distribute information across campus.

I’m sorry: a mass email to the campus once a week is not sufficient to effectively inform the Moravian community about all the events that take place here. And because of that the campus clubs and the like may have to return to more “primitive” methods of communication, such as posting flyers and pamphlets about campus events.  

Constant reminders and promotion of events are necessary to continue to draw attendance to campus activities. For example, this past Friday on South Campus there was an event #StayStrong, in which author Libario Obeid held a presentation about his book, “#staySTRONG: Being Mindful that Life’s Challenges Impact More than Just You,” which correlated to this year’s InFocus theme: Healthcare.

How many people knew about the event this past week? How well aware were people that they had the opportunity and chance to see Obeid on South Campus? I know that I didn’t have much information.

A once-weekly email from the Office of Student Affairs is not enough to effectively communicate or remind the campus community of events happening on campus throughout the entire week.

So how does the administration want us to learn about campus events? The Moravian College app.

But many students are still without the app, and many faculty and staff are unaware that a Moravian College app even exists. Why? Because the administration has not effectively educated most of the Moravian community about the app and how to use it. The few people who seem to know about it are orientation leaders, resident advisors, and members of the United Student Government (USG). 

USG at their meeting this past week once again received training to learn the app. At the meeting, they also listened to two individuals who presented the results of an independent survey that sampled 10% of the undergraduate population and found that 90% of them prefer to use their email over the app.

The report also included findings that approximately one-third of the sample population did not even have the app.

This creates an unfortunate situation for students, faculty, and staff who are not familiar with and don’t use the app: they won’t learn about campus events.

Moravian College released a new app to address the overflow of emails, but they have not capitalized on an opportunity to educate the users of the app.

In fact, I do not know of any student on campus that was asked if they wanted an app. And after the app appeared, it was poorly rolled out, with the directive that everyone had to use it coming in the middle of the semester.

Now the administration is coercing the student population and its employees to use the platform.

I’m insulted and frustrated that students were kept in the dark about this decision.  

None of the students asked for an app. I do not recall anyone leading a discussion in potential platforms to better communicate and distribute information to students.

Ironically, I really miss my emails now.

The clock is ticking Moravian College. Perhaps next time student, faculty, and staff voices will be heard prior to making any major decision such as this one.