By The Echo Editorial Board
The Echo Editorial Board consists of Co-Editor in Chief Chrysa Keenon, Co-Editor in Chief Gabby Carlson, and Opinions Editor Drew Shriner.
As reported in last week's edition of The Echo, the class of 2022 is the largest incoming class in Taylor's history. The Editorial Board would like to congratulate the Admissions staff on their success.
With a large incoming class, several logistical and cultural problems could arise.
One logistical problem is the growing number of students to house. However, Chief Financial Officer Stephen Olson believes that the effect will be mitigated by the size of the class of 2021.
"Keep in mind that this large class is coming on the heels of a rather small class from last fall, so the total number of students on campus will be relatively stable," Olson said.
However, the problem of housing has affected some wings and floors, such as Second East Olson (2EO), which has lost their lounge due to the need for more housing.
Junior Marissa Flick, who lives on 2EO, said her wing lost a space for communal gatherings but prefers having more students.
"...[W]e were able to have more girls on our wing, which added a lot to our community," Flick said. "Even just adding one or two more people adds a whole new person and new stories and new opportunities to connect with other people. I would definitely say being able to have other people who want to live in Olson to be on the wing definitely outweighs the challenge of finding a space for us all to gather together because that is an obstacle you can work around."
However, the problems are not only logistical. Large numbers of new students can also affect wing/floor cultures.
This year, Third Center Wengatz has 14 new students. Discipleship Assistant and junior on the wing Jack Andrews has some concerns about the students fitting in but ultimately thinks the transition will go well.
"Obviously, when you have this new influx of people, they immediately leave a pretty big impression on the wing, just as far as new personalities, new faces," Andrews said. "There's just a lot of excitement when you have a young wing or a young floor, and so with this many freshmen, there's a new energy, a new vigor that's in the atmosphere with events and traditions."
As noted in last week's article, incoming classes typically have more females than males, so female dorms and floors have felt the effects of increasing size more than male dorms and floors.
The demographics of this class differ according to Vice President for Enrollment and Marketing Steve Mortland.
"The unusual nature of this class is that it is the most balanced class in gender - almost 50/50 male and female," Mortland said.
This year, the effects of the incoming class will be felt by all students, not only female wings and floors.
The Editorial Board sees these potential negatives simply as challenges, not deterrents to growth. We trust that the good work done by God through the Taylor community will be increased as the Taylor community gains more members.
The opinions expressed in Our View columns reflect the views of The Echo Editorial Board, and not necessarily those of Taylor University.