Though these exceptional times have become increasingly routine, we must remember that they are not normal. The pandemic has not reached a statute of limitations, and we cannot slip back into business as usual. Things are still hard.
The role of our Editorial Board is to represent the voice, not just of the Stanford Daily, but of the larger Stanford community. It is our charge to respond to the needs of our community, amplifying issues facing students, faculty and staff.
Currently, graduate students are shouldering the demands of the University's teaching and research responsibilities, while facing the prospect of a bleak job market and uncertain financial future. On top of this, graduate students face a growing affordability crisis stemming from the high cost of living at Stanford. These well-documented struggles predate the pandemic, but they have been exacerbated in light of it.
This crisis is a moment that reveals Stanford’s priorities. Unfortunately, currently it is the students, not the school, that are stepping up to fill gaps when it comes to crucial needs. That should not be the case. That is why we, as an Editorial Board, are asking the University to rapidly create resource lists, change its policies around leaves of absence and create an emergency assistance program.
Whether administrators listen to us, the students, is symbolic of whose concerns they are valuing. This process governs our ability to seek and receive some form of justice. It is only right that it takes into account our thoughts, perspectives and experiences.
Recommended S/NC should not stop at a notation on the transcript, but should be a step toward encouraging students to balance due focus on coursework with the persistent adjustments and burdens that the developing pandemic will continue to bring.
President Marc Tessier-Lavigne once again sidestepped the question of African and African American Studies (AAAS) departmentalization in a June 30 letter addressing racial justice. The administration’s decision to not begin departmentalization was made without consulting either AAAS students or faculty, and it fails to honor the explicit recommendations of the Black Graduate Students Association (BGSA), the Black Student Union (BSU) and over 5,000 individuals who signed a BGSA and BSU circulated petition.