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Letters to the Editor

Students should thank USF help

Sometimes, I get sick of reading news, letters to the editor and columns because all the authors seem to do is complain about things. There are many things to complain about, true, but how many times do our students stop and notice the little things that make our campus special?

While complaining about parking, how many times do we actually show the Parking Services employees the respect they deserve for having a tough job? It’s definitely not something I would like to do.

Or how about the person that cleans up your mess in the cafeteria? Meet Forestine, one of the custodians for the Phyllis P. Marshall Center. Quietly, she comes in and cleans up our messes and takes out our trash. Her job does not warrant much respect, but she works long hours.

Or take the elderly lady with the cute white hair in the Tampa Room; she waits silently for students to finish lunch so she can quickly clear the table for the next person. Do we ever take the time to say thank you and be appreciative that there is someone to do the dirty jobs? I am sure most people do not even notice her or her coworkers.

I think it would be nice if people on campus would take the time to notice the people that really keep our campus running. Say hello to them and have a conversation; you will be surprised what you will find.

So, thank you to the people who run the meters and the people who clean up our trash and keep the lights running. Without you, our campus would definitely not be as beautiful.

Brittany Link is a freshman majoring in nursing.

Students have plenty of tests

Re: “Standardized tests not standard for college” Jan. 28

Regarding the FCAT-like tests for college-age students, I would like to say that this is a “dumbing-down” of our education. How will this FCAT-like test stand up to high-stakes college tests such as the MCAT and LSAT? I ask because students who demonstrate their knowledge about biological or political/legal processes via tests like the MCAT shouldn’t have to also prove they can count to ten and spell Mississippi in an FCAT-like basic skills test (I wonder if Jeb and Dubya can spell Mississippi …).

I think it is safe to say that someone who can describe the formation of a protein or discuss the legal aspects of an assisted suicide case is probably able to do basic math and understand simple English. This is akin to asking a Nobel-laureate in physics to prove he can recite the multiplication tables of the number 12 before he receives his award.

There are many students who will not be taking exams to enter professional or graduate school but will directly enter the work force after graduation. Should they have to take the FCAT-like test? I again say no, because the test will not determine industry specific needs of the labor being provided by these individuals. Typical Florida State University System graduate Jane Doe doesn’t give a rats-patootie if a thumb tack is to Bubblicious as screwdriver is to belly-lint (even the SAT is getting rid of analogies), as she intends on working as a programmer. Her effectiveness at her job has nothing to do with the pseudo-FCAT. It would be truly beneficial, however, if various industries came up with their own exams that can gauge the performance of students in skills they will be required to know to do a good job like the MCAT or LSAT.

Samvid Dwivedi is a senior majoring in microbiology and is a Senator for the College of Arts and Sciences.