The Gustavian Weekly

Gustie Voices serves as forum for discussion

By Haley Bell Staff Writer | March 1, 2013 | News

Gustie Voices is an open forum any Gustie may use to share letters with the Board of Trustees, President Jack Ohle, student groups, administrators, faculty, and the rest of the Gustavus community.

In December 2012, a group of Gustavus students and alumni gave letters and gifts to President Ohle expressing their hopes for Gustavus’ future. The expressions went unrecognized, and therefore the letters were taken public. These letters and responses are now in a collection on the Gustie Voices website and Facebook page.

The Facebook page also shares information regarding the organization and serves as a great place to keep in contact with those who share concerns and hopes for the future of Gustavus.

GustieVoices.com is a website where people can read, share, and discuss letters. The page is a resource that gives Gusties the opportunity to share their opinions with the public, as long as they are shared respectfully.

Currently, most letters that are posted vary from demands for Ohle’s resignation, to urging caution, and to others seeking more information on the current issue.

“Gustie Voices is for Gusties who are concerned, confused, upset, uncertain, opinionated, or something else altogether. Letters have been posted by alums from as far back as 1963 and by current students; a letter from the faculty senate is a recent and important addition,” Alumna Bethany Ringdal said.

“As a collective public letter-writing group, we can achieve a greater impact, and the beauty of it is the accessibility of the website: any Gustavus community member can publish,” Senior Ian Shay said.

By taking advantage of such an opportunity, the Gustavus community can all work together to influence change.

“Gusties are blessed by their education with critical thinking skills; Gustie Voices is an opportunity to apply those skills back towards the institution that granted them,” Ringdal said.

Members of Gustie Voices are dedicated to Gustavus and passionate about working towards   the betterment of the College by putting their beliefs somewhere that others will notice.

“To be a Gustie means to stand up for our community, to do hard things for the people and the places that we love, and to ask ourselves what we can do,” Junior Kelly Dumais said.

Gustie Voices encourages others to learn facts, seek the truth, make an opinion, speak up, and work with others to solve problems.

“If you are concerned about Gustavus, whether you’re a student, alum, faculty or staff member, administrator, donor, or parent, write a letter and post it on Gustie Voices,” Shay says.

“All Gusties and all opinions are welcome,” Ringdal noted.