The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Vacancies in Student Life continue to impact students

Administration says roles to be filled soon
Photo by Samuel Jackson for The Lafayette
The Office of Student Life is located in Feather House, one block away from campus.

Student advocacy groups are still feeling the effects of the months-long vacancies left by the departures of Tommy Lee, the former assistant director of intercultural development for gender and sexuality programs and Katy Bednarsky, the former student advocacy and prevention coordinator. Both left the college more than seven months ago, though administrators claim that both roles will soon be filled.

Lee left the college on Oct. 6 for a position at Dickinson College. He had served in his role at Lafayette since 2021.

“It’s been a struggle, I’m not going to lie,” said Cate Cheng ’25, the president of OUT Lafayette, about creating the next executive board during the vacancy.

“I think everyone knows how much pressure there is and how much extra work being on a student leadership board like OUT is, especially without support from people like [Lee],” Cheng continued.

Cheng added that Lee’s absence has also made organizing events, planning upcoming elections and budgeting more difficult.

According to Ernest Jeffries, the vice president for inclusion, Lee’s replacement has been found.

“We have offered the position, and it was accepted,” Jeffries wrote in an email. “We will make a formal announcement soon.”

Jeffries did not comment further on the matter.

Cheng, who served on the search committee, voiced her support for the candidate. Cheng further disclosed that the committee — composed of students, faculty and staff — was formed on Dec. 16. They selected the candidate on April 5.

“Overall, I think the person that we’re looking at hiring is incredibly qualified and I’m very excited to have them on campus,” Cheng said.

Bednarksy left the college in late July after less than two years in her role.

Bednarsky’s absence has left student organizations like Pards Against Sexual Assault, commonly known as PASA, and Peer Anti-Violence Educators, commonly known as PAVE, without much guidance.

“Katy’s departure left student organizations like PASA scrambling to access information or funds that normally she would be able to do for us,” wrote Sarah Murphy ’25, the co-president of PASA, in a text message.

Bednarsky, who served as the staff advisor for both student organizations, was a key resource for victims of sexual assault on campus.

“It also took the school months to remove Katy’s information from the website, so during the Red Zone, a time of year when sexual assault rates are significantly higher, students were misled into believing she was an active resource,” Murphy wrote.

Carter Siegel ’24, coordinator for PAVE, declined to comment. Quinn Gregorich ’24, who holds the same position, did not respond to requests for comment.

A search committee has been formed to replace Bednarsky, according to Jennifer Dize, the interim dean of students.

“The search is underway and we’re currently looking for candidates,” Dize said.

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About the Contributors
Clara Witmer
Clara Witmer, Staff News Writer
May or may not use to expose your deepest, darkest secrets.
Sam Cohen
Sam Cohen, Movie Columnist
Sam Cohen (he/him/his) is a junior majoring in Film and Media Studies. He won the Special Grand Jury Prize for his Comedy short film “The Gum Run” at the 2019 Montclair Film Festival Emerging Filmmakers Competition. Sam writes weekly reviews of recent TV Shows and Movies while occasionally reviewing older, forgotten classics. When not reviewing, discussing, or watching films, Sam is also a part of many extracurriculars on campus, including being a co-captain of the Ultimate Frisbee team, a member of the Chi Phi Fraternity, and an officer of the Film Society.
Samuel Jackson
Samuel Jackson, Staff Photographer

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