Students continue search for answers

Nicole Stejskal

As I sat down to write this column, I thought about discussing my opinions in the aftermath of what has been deemed the “Washburn e-mail crisis.” However, despite the obvious consequences that stem from a lack of university e-mail communication, I believe there is an even greater crisis at hand: an absence of communication and flow throughout the entire university.

This may be an assumption, but I would bet that if you talk to any Washburn student, they could tell you horror stories of trouble they’ve had with the university and many of the offices that create its functional foundation.

Financial aid is one office that has grown increasingly popular among student dilemmas. As a key factor in the process of giving students money to pay for their education, the office and its staff have fallen short. For instance, as of the fourth week of the semester, scholarship checks still have not been processed, which means no extra money for students, especially those who rely on it to pay for things like rent, groceries and gas.

The problems don’t stop there either. If students are having issues with the financial aid office, chances are they’ll spend some quality bonding time with the business office, too. If they’re lucky, students may be able to avoid the financial aid office/business office blame game, where each points a finger at the other as the problem’s cause, failing to come to a resolution. But good luck dodging that bullet.

These offices aren’t the only culprits in student crises. The payroll office often fails to issue paychecks or sends them to the wrong home address, and getting applications and transcripts processed can be a nightmare between the admissions and registrar’s offices, despite the fact that they’re right next door to each other.

Additionally, a lack of understanding for students’ concerns heightens relationship problems between students and staff from these offices. As students, we understand that not everything runs smoothly all of the time, but when we repeatedly have problems with your office every semester, things can become difficult for us. If you’re rude, impatient or unwilling to understand our situations and be helpful to us, your frustration with us only increases our frustration with you.

So, how can we clear up these issues? Simply put, our university needs to work more on internal communication. Offices and their staff members need to let one another know what they are doing. And when things go wrong, offices need to communicate with the students. We want to know why there are problems and what you’re doing to solve them. Help us help you make your jobs easier. Otherwise, expect to see more columns like this in the future.