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GSC Activities Shoud Not Be Overlooked

We are writing to express our disappointment in the amount of coverage The Tech gives to Graduate Student Council activities and specifically the recent lack of response to a press release about the expansion of the Cambridge East and West Safe Ride routes.

The Graduate Student Council is the student government representing the graduate student population, which comprises half of the students at MIT. Many of our activities benefit students across this campus, both graduates and undergraduates. Some of these include leading the fight against the unfair monopoly and pricing of the campus-wide ACUS long-distance phone rates; planning and implementing six new Safe Ride stops; expanding the twice-weekly grocery shuttle in response to increase in ridership; planning a healthy eating seminar; co-sponsoring a major research ethics talk; and initiating and running the Commencement ticket redistribution program, a lottery which helped distribute extra tickets.

Out of these, only the grocery shuttle has received any recent press. We realize that The Tech is not obligated to cover all of our events, but we believe that it is The Tech's responsibility to at least be aware of our activities.

Over a period of six months, the GSC proposed the expansion of Safe Ride and worked with the Campus Police and Standard Parking on the addition of six new stops. The changes, effective Oct. 1, were designed to make Safe Ride more convenient for graduate students and other off-campus residents. They also increased the overall travel times of the Cambridge East and Cambridge West circuits.

We were hoping to get all this information out to students in as timely a manner as possible, both to allow students who live near the new stops to take advantage of them and to minimize the inconvenience of the new schedule to previous users of the service.

GSC members put a lot of work into organizing and publicizing public service projects like Safe Ride. These projects are designed to improve the welfare of graduate students, but they often benefit the entire MIT community. We do not expect The Tech or any other media to cover all of our events. However, we do feel that it is important to provide timely coverage of issues that benefit all students.

On the other hand, there was an entire article on the front page of Oct. 11 issue reporting on the first meeting of the Undergraduate Association. The article discussed the fact that the UA wants to become more proactive and start projects including improvements to Safe Ride. Certainly these goals are admirable, and hopefully the current leadership of the UA will be able to implement them.

However, the GSC already is a proactive organization and already has done something about Safe Ride. The UA was recognized for proposing to address an issue more than the GSC was for actually doing something about it. This appears to indicate an indifference toward GSC activities on the part of The Tech.

We are very disappointed we can not count on The Tech to provide this kind of coverage, but we hope The Tech will be willing to work with us to remedy this situation in the future.

Jennifer A. Sullivan G,

Co-Chair Housing and Community Affairs Committee , GSC

Eva Moy G,

Secretary, GSC