An Open Apology to Covenant Administration

 The Great Hall, photo by Abby Whisler

The Great Hall, photo by Abby Whisler

As I opened up The Bagpipe last week, I was slightly horrified by what I read in Carrie Woodward's article entitled "Mandatory Meal Plan." When I read my own name and the comments about the meal plan that were associated with it, I was shocked by what I read. The comments attributed to my name were highly critical and accusatory. I couldn't believe I had actually written them on the change.org petition, so I went and checked to make sure I hadn't been misquoted or taken out of context. To my embarrassment, those were my words. In the heat of the moment, I failed to state my position very clearly. My concern was not with the administration in general or Dean Voyles in particular. I was mainly frustrated by the tone and timing of the announcement. However, in my frustration I was unclear and unfair in the language I used, and my comments read as if they were directed at the administration and Dean Voyles. After reading my own comments, I scrolled down the change.org page and was disturbed by what I read. Many of the comments used language I will not repeat here. The tone from the student body, parents, and alumni was accusatory and harsh. It seems that I, along with much of the rest of the Covenant Community, are guilty of the same things we were concerned about. We failed to communicate clearly and charitably. Quite frankly, I am embarrassed for myself and the student body. We failed in our duty as the body of Christ to love well. We didn't think the best. We weren't slow to anger. We didn't hold our tongues. While I still believe the announcement of the mandatory meal plan was not the best, I am deeply sorry for the student body's response to it. That being said, I would like to offer this as open apology to the administration and Dean Voyles. You did not deserve the backlash you received from this. You deal with more in a day than we could ever realize, and you certainly didn't need an extra headache, and I am in awe of the way you have gracefully handled all of this in spite of our lack of grace. You have my sincerest apology. To the students of Covenant College, it's time we remember that at the end of the day, we are all on the same team. It's time we start acting like it.