By Matthew Muñoz
Kalamazoo College Administration officially declared last Friday the 37th annual Day of Gracious Living late Thursday night following an
Morgan pushed for the day off from classes even though it was not one of the college administration’s pre-approved dates, according to Provost Michael McDonald.
“Alex Morgan and I agreed upon and vetted four possible dates for DoGL; Friday was not one of those dates,” said McDonald.
The original chosen dates were May 11, 18, 23 and 25, which Morgan said he relayed to the provost in an email on Monday, March 28. He said that he first put last Friday on the table in an email on Monday, May 16 after checking the weather forecast.
McDonald replied to the email the same day saying: “I can ask the President what she thinks about opening up Friday as an option. But I think sticking with Monday may be the best.”
Morgan sent an email to McDonald on Thursday morning with the weather forecast attached asking for administration to reconsider Friday as a date and later visited him in his office, he said.
“Alex did come to me on Thursday and asked if we might have DoGL on Friday,” said McDonald. “I did look into the potential conflicts this could cause, versus the conflicts that may be caused by having it on one of the dates chosen for this week, and there were several additional conflicts on Friday. Given this, and given the process we had agreed upon from the start, I indicated to Alex that we should stick with the current plan.”
Morgan decided to choose Friday anyway. “The weather and what was going on around campus were the two biggest factors,” he said.
On Thursday afternoon he sent out an email to faculty asking them to cancel their classes and support the Day of Gracious Living that he had chosen.
“After I visited the Provost, I was set on Friday,” said Morgan. “I got an overwhelmingly positive response from faculty and students.”
Morgan, who said he got over 100 friend requests Thursday night, began posting on Facebook notifying students of the unofficial declaration and bus schedules for the next day.
“My wall became a sounding board for information,” said Morgan.
At 6:49 p.m. on Thursday, Associate Provost for Information Services Greg Diment sent out an email to the campus on behalf of McDonald confirming Friday as the official Day of Gracious Living.
“I decided that it was in our best academic interest to simply confirm DoGL to be on Friday so that we would not run the risk of having many cancelled classes on Friday as well as possibly this week,” said McDonald.
“I think a lot of people were burnt out by then and needed a day off,” said Morgan. “I think a lot of people have portrayed this as a battle between me and the provost and I think that is an exaggeration.”