CURRAN ANSWERS STUDENT QUESTIONS: Dr. Dan on D2D, campus renovations and his hair

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Dr.Dan Q&A20140211-IM-2WUD president Dan Curran fields questions during an open Q and A session hosted by the President’s Emissaries, Tuesday, Feb. 11, in Sears Recital Hall. Curran
answered questions on topics like Dayton 2 Daytona, St. Patrick’s Day and future renovations. IAN MORAN/CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHER

By: Sarah Devine – Asst. News Editor

University of Dayton President Dan Curran fielded questions from students ranging from St. Patrick’s Day concerns to his daily routine in a forum Tuesday, Feb. 11, at 7 p.m. in Sears Recital Hall.

Facilitated by the President’s Emissary, the forum, with about 50 students in attendance, was open to all members of the university community. Other university officials in attendance included Dean of Students and Associate Vice President for Student Development Chris Schramm, Executive Director of the Center for Student Involvement Amy Lopez-Matthews and Vice President for Student Development Bill Fischer.

Pepsi or Coke?
Curran said he stopped drinking “pop,” but he used to drink Diet Pepsi “all the time.” He said he did not take part in the university’s decision to switch from Coca-Cola products to Pepsi products.

Housing selection process and the future of the Ghetto
Fischer explained the housing assignment process changes are intended to link students’ contributions to the community and their housing assignments.

“There will be points awarded for these contributions,” he said. Fischer said they are eliminating conduct points as a factor to create a more fair process. The university is looking for opportunities to expand the student neighborhood, not “knock down the Ghetto,” Curran said.

“It’s part of the character of our institution. It’s a unique UD aspect we will maintain,” he said.

If Curran was a student
As a first-year student, Curran said he would want to live in Marycrest Complex because of the amount of students who live there. He said he would pick upperclassmen housing according to the type of house available instead of the street.

UD’s family vacation
“We’re not phasing Dayton 2 Daytona out,” Curran said.

Scott Bridwell, a trip coordinator for D2D and senior mechanical engineering major, added the administration wants to keep the tradition alive.

Future renovations
Curran said Immaculate Conception Chapel will be renovated in August. He explained College Park Avenue in front of St. Mary’s Hall and the chapel will be turned into a green space. There will be another residential hall built within three to five years, Curran said. Future renovations to the interior of Roesch Library may include more open learning space and compact shelving.

International student relations
Curran said the university community has made advances in connecting with international students, but said more needs to be done.

“In 2005, we had hardly any international students,” he said. “We have an internationally diverse campus that we must leverage,” he said.

Fifteen percent of the student population is from another country, Curran estimated.

The broken 40 bottle heard ‘round campus
He called the events on Sunday, March 17, 2013, “unacceptable” and said the incident was harmful to the entire university, especially seniors and fifth-year students in the job market. In response to suggestions of moving spring break to include the holiday, Curran said he is not going to let a day dictate the schedule.

“We’re not naïve. We know people who are 21 will go out and drink and we know people who are not 21 will go out and drink,” he said.

He explained there will be more education and alternative events available to students, and measures will be educational and not punitive. Curran stressed the university’s desire to ensure student safety this year.

“I have faith in students…I think many were embarrassed by what happened,” he said. “We’ll see how it goes.”

Where in the world is Dr. Dan?
“Today, I talked with the mayor [of Dayton], and then I met with the cabinet. I went downtown to the Dayton Development Coalition and met with them for two hours…I came back for an hour and a half meeting with faculty. Then I had a sandwich, and came here,” he said. Curran estimated he spends 50 percent of his time away from campus.

To close or not to close
Curran said Provost Joseph Saliba and Vice President of Facilities Management Beth Keyes make the call on whether or not the university will close due to inclement weather. He said they take into account conditions that would prove difficult for faculty to commute to campus.

Curran said the decision to close on Tuesday, Jan. 28, was made due to forecasted wind chills and a case of frostbite.

His hair
Responding to the question, “How do you have such great hair,” Curran said he had to give credit to his parents. “I don’t personally think I have great hair,” he said.

For more answers to questions posed during the forum, visit Flyer News’ Twitter account @FlyerNews.