The Scarlet & Black

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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Letter to the Editor: Do we have enough academic work opportunities?

At Grinnell we have four great opportunities for working in academics: grading, mentoring, tutoring and researching. These opportunities are so good for so many people, so it is a shame we do not have more of them.

Imagine if Grinnell made these opportunities one of their top priorities.

First, let’s take the non-worker student perspective. Each 200-level and below non-special topic class could easily benefit from both a mentor and/or a grader. It would give students extra support and potentially faster assignment grading. More tutors would also be extremely helpful for students, giving one-on-one help with difficult assignments.

For the graders, mentors and researchers, these positions allow students to earn money, help their peers and professors, gain experience, boost their resumé, connect with professors and learn more about their fields.

For professors, the help with grading would remove a time-consuming task, allowing professors to engage more around campus, have longer office hours or other beneficial activities. Mentoring and tutoring would spread out the burden of helping students academically. More student researchers would allow professors to be far more productive in their own research.

For the College as a whole, there are some extra benefits as well. These positions would help the College recruit both professors and students, by illustrating the above benefits and, hopefully, the large number of students employed in these positions. Lastly, such opportunities will encourage alumni donation, something the College is currently struggling with, from the students that take advantage of them.

For fewer than 10 dollars an hour, increasing the opportunities in grading, mentoring, tutoring and researching is one of the most cost effective ways to improve the College. The administration should think twice before spending money elsewhere first.

—Brennan Wallace ’16

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