Chancellor’s town hall holds potential for students to spark change


Chancellor Boschini speaks at his annual town hall in March 2013. Photo by TCU 360.

By Olivia Wales

Despite a consistent low attendance, students who attend Chancellor Victor Boschini’s annual town hall have sparked changes on campus.

“After every [town hall] we look at changing something; something little or something big,” Boschini said.

Throughout the past eight years, students have advocated for extended weekend library hours, extended Market Square hours and the creation of new food options in the King Family Commons, Boschini said.

Chancellor Boschini speaks at his annual town hall in March 2013. Photo by TCU 360

Students can meet with Boschini at 9 a.m. Wednesday in the Dee J. Kelly Center at his spring student town hall.

Typically, students ask questions about the increasing tuition price, the core curriculum and the future of TCU, Boschini said.

The town hall was created to resolve student protests after a 6.5 percent tuition hike in 2011 that raised tuition to $32,400.

Michael Millican, TCU alumnus, led a group of around 50 student-protestors who stood on the steps of Sadler with posters in November 2011.

Students protest an increase in tuition without transparency at the Occupy Sadler protest in November 2011. Photo courtesy of TCU 360

“The event was just a very quick show of strength,” Millican said. “There were quite a few media outlets present and probably 30 to 50 students.”

Occupy Sadler capitalized on the political buzz of the simultaneous Occupy Wall Street protest, which captured the media’s attention.

To end Occupy Sadler, Boschini held his first town hall and has held separate town halls for students and faculty in the past eight years.

Chancellor Boschini spoke to students on the steps of Sadler in November 2011 at his first town hall. Photo by TCU 360

While TCU did not increase merit-based scholarships in proportion to tuition increases, as the Occupy Sadler protest demanded, Millican sees a lasting impact from his efforts.

“I would like to think the upcoming town hall is an offshoot of our efforts all those years ago,” Mullican said. “We did what we did because we love TCU and hated to see the university price existing students out so cold-heartedly.”

However, the issue of increasing tuition without paralleled increases in merit-based scholarships has not disappeared.

The TCU Board of Trustees has already voted to increase tuition for the 2019-2020 school year by 4.9 percent from $46,860 to $49,160.

Boschini said he hopes to receive new ideas from students at the upcoming town hall.

“It’s less like people grinding an axe and more like people promoting a new idea, which is good,” Boschini said.