Mayor, Provost meet with students


Kelsey Neubauer, Staff Writer

A public coffee hour with the mayor in the Davis Center’s Mansfield Room on Sep 28th,  launched a discussion among students, administration and Burlington community members.. ,

Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger and UVM Provost David Rosowsky sat down for an hour to speak to UVM students about the relationship between the city and University, particularly how the two affect off campus housing for UVM students

The discussion focused on how both the University and the city can create a better life for students at UVM.

“There is a certain partnership that says we can go further together than we can apart,” Rosowsky said.

He said that he and the mayor hope to create a dialogue between students, the University and the city.

“It is this shared ethos that has kept the University and the city very tightly aligned,” Rosowsky said.

Sophomore Lachlan Francis, SGA chair of the Committee on Legislative Action, said this event is important in helping solve issues facing the community.

SGA President Jason Maulucci questioned whether anything was being done to ensure  better quality of life for students off-campus.

Weinberger said there are plans to provide better and cheaper housing for students.

“We have come together and said: let’s build 1,500 beds that can accommodate more than half the off-campus housing students and take the strain off the downtown area within the next few years,” he said.

Weinberger said on-campus housing creates more housing market competition downtown, thus holding landlords more accountable for providing a higher quality of life for all tenants.

In addition to the new on-campus housing at UVM, Rosowsky detailed future plans for the graduate students living in the Ethan Allen apartments, which will be sold to the Champlain Housing Trust this year, according to a Sept. 9 Cynic article. .

Rosowsky said UVM will help Ethan Allen residents transition to new housing.

“A big part of this decision is we need to make sure the stipend we give to graduates is high enough to allow them to live downtown, given that our apartment levels are higher than the national average,” he said.

Rosowsky said that he would like to involve UVM engineering alumni in the construction of the new STEM complex.

“There is no reason we cannot find opportunities for UVM alum during this construction,” he said.

The mayor and provost said they would like to hold informal chats with students more often.

“It was great to have Mayor Weinberger on campus,” Francis said. “The mayor and provost were made accessible to students and were able to answer questions about some of the biggest challenges our community faces.”

Francis said he felt that through this event, student voices were heard and given a greater role in the community.