The changes to Ring Dance, which were decided on this year, have prompted many reactions from students and alumni including a petition organized by Anna Kuta, a Westhampton College alumna who graduated in 2011.
Kuta started the petition after talking with alumni about their thoughts about the changes. "I know a lot of people were feeling the same as I was about the situation," she said.
Kuta said the goal was to get 1,000 signatures and then take the petition to the deans and President Ayers. She started a Facebook group named "Sign the 'Petition for Tradition' against UR's changes to Ring Dance" to gather followers. Currently, she had 325 signatures but will start pushing the word more aggressively, she said.
During her time at Richmond, Kuta was a four-year member of Westhampton College Government Association and served as the junior and senior class president.
She said she wanted members of the administration to know that people are not only unhappy because of the changes themselves but that they're being implemented without any input from students. "I want the administration to know that making a change like this without getting input from students is a dangerous precedent," she said.
Those involved in the changes have responded but remain firm in their decision to implement them. An event was held to discuss the changes to Ring Dance Oct. 17. About 35 women filled the chairs arranged in a circle in the Keller Hall Reception Room.
"We've considered so many things," Juliette Landphair, dean of Westhampton College, said in response to the changes. She said that her role as the leader of the college is to think strategically, and she thinks the changes are best for the future of the college.
A member of the WCGA said that the changes were set in stone.
Kuta's petition can be found at http://www.change.org/petitions/university-of-richmond-petition-for-tradition-4. According to the site, the petition has 327 supporters with 673 more needed.
Contact reporter Mia Lichter at firstname.lastname@example.org