I woke up on a normal class day during Fall 2013 semester, my second semester at IIT, to find an unusual email in my inbox. I was called upon to participate with a few selected other people in the student speak committee. What is that committee and what does it do? I was wondering the same when reading through that email and just getting the feel that it is a chance to do something special, but not quite sure what it could be. I replied to that email with my interest in participating, not knowing what exactly was waiting for me. It seemed to be an experience that can help me grow as a student and serve the IIT community.
I went to our first committee meeting to find out many of the other students participating were my friends, which excited me even more for the experience. I met great other people and learned exactly what this committee was about, and I was happy I decided to join. Our mission was to select a number of departments in IIT and evaluate their services and performance using the Student Speak Survey. This annual survey goes out to the entire student body, and allows every single student to express himself or herself freely, and have a hand in improving the departments that they interact with on a daily basis.
The survey was started in 2009 with the following mandate:
“IIT students launched a new strategy to solicit input toward improving the quality of services provided to IIT students. The initiative, Students Speak, focuses on soliciting feedback anonymously from students via a confidential survey about how to improve administrative services.”
Following the successful first-year effort, the Students Speak task force again is soliciting student feedback. Ever since, it has been proving its value and affectivity in improving our students’ experience each year. The results this year have shown that more students have taken the survey than any previous year, and that all the departments’ performance has been improving over time.
“Some of the students from the committee on presentation day”
Near the end of the semester, our committee facilitated a presentation to President John L. Anderson, Provost Alan W. Cramb, and the directors of each department alongside other staff and faculty that participate in changing our lives every day. The results of the survey and the recommendations that we offered were adopted by each department, and were taken into action. It is fascinating to know that after all the hard work we did to get the survey out to our students; we can now sit and watch things take effect, see the change happening in front of your eyes.
As a student who has not yet finished his first year at IIT, I could not be more thankful and overwhelmed for an opportunity to make my school a better place, and make a change on such a big scale that will forever be remembered by me and every other student.
Hamze Sukkar Bachelor of Architecture Candidate Anticipated Graduate Year 2018 firstname.lastname@example.org
Other Resources: http://www.iit.edu/students_speak/