Music forum will discuss security, new construction

Becky Bowman

Hoping to improve the dialogue between students and administrators, School of Music Student Advisory Board members said they will discuss proposals such as heightened security in Regenstein Hall of Music and the future construction of a new music building at an open forum today.

The 4:30 p.m. meeting in Pick-Staiger Concert Hall’s rehearsal room will include pizza in an effort to attract more Music students to come and voice their opinions, said board co-chairman Cory Hills.

“I’m sure many of the ideas discussed will be new to us or will be things we haven’t discussed yet,” said Hills, a Music junior.

About 12 students attended the last forum, held in October in the Music Administration Building, Hills said. But members of the board said they hope the new time and location, closer to the rehearsals of both Northwestern University Chamber Orchestra and Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra, will bring more students to the meeting.

Chief of University Police Saul Chafin and Music Webmaster Seth Cohen will speak at the forum, and administrators including Music Dean Bernard Dobroski and associate deans Frederick Hemke and Rene Machado will be on hand to field questions, said board co-chairwoman Jessica Schaeffer.

Board co-chairwoman and Music junior DeAunn Davis said students should take advantage of the forum’s direct access to administrators. Discussion at the last forum centered on possibilities surrounding the construction of a new Music building, an issue about which many Music students have strong opinions, she said.

Building plans have been drawn up several times for construction on the parking lot adjacent to Regenstein, Davis said. But the school is waiting for a lead donor to begin, Schaeffer said.

While waiting to lobby for a new building, the board has tackled tasks such as reorganizing the Music listserv and adding a security system to Regenstein. The board has proposed an electronic key card system or Marlok key system to be installed in Regenstein, at a cost of at least $70,000, Schaeffer said.

Board members decided to pursue an electronic system after discussions with Dobroski about the feasibility of using student monitors, but any solution will have difficulty, they said.

The board also would like to install a security system in the Music Administration Building, but faces obstacles in the building’s age and electrical wiring, Hills said.

Music junior Beth Kirkpatrick said that while students have often faced difficulties in getting ideas through to the Music administration, she will try to attend Tuesday’s forum. Kirkpatrick said she voiced her opinion on the poor condition of MAB directly to the administration last year.

“I think it’s important that we try to have an input,” Kirkpatrick said. “It’s definitely something people have tried to do before, but if (the board) could get anything accomplished, that would be great.”