Essay topics: "Tusk University should build a new recreational facility, both to attract new students and to better serve the needs of our current student body. Tusk projects that enrollment will double over the next 10 years, based on current trends. The new student body is expected to reflect a much higher percentage of commuter students that we currently enroll. This will make the existing facilities inadequate. Moreover, the cost of health and recreation club membership in our community has increased rapidly in recent years. Thus, students will find it much more advantageous to make use of the facilities on campus. Finally, an attractive new recreation center would make prospective students, especially athletically gifted ones, more likely to enroll at Tusk."
Write a response that examines this argument's unstated assumptions. Make sure you explain how this argument depends on those assumptions and what the implications are if the assumptions are wrong.
The author concludes that building a new recreational facility at Tusk University will attract new students and better serve the needs of the current student body. This statement seems logical at first glance, but she relies on assumptions for which have no clear evidence and uses terms that lack definition.
First, the author assumes that because of the increase in students projected to attend Tusk University, this will make existing structures inadequate for students to use. She also insinuates that building a new recreational facility will attract more students to the university. There is no evidence proving that existing structures on campus are inadequate of providing for the students recreational needs. Research and evaluations on existing facilities at Tusk University could provide some clarity on whether or not renovations or new projects should be planned. It may not be wrong to say that building a new recreational facility will attract more students, especially athletically gifted ones, to Tusk, but this facility will not likely be the deciding factor of which college to attend for most students. Incoming students look at a variety of factors when deciding which university is right for him/her, like which majors are offered, campus life, and sports teams. Having a recreational facility would be an added bonus, but would likely not sway a student’s decision one way or the other.
The author also assumes that having an on campus recreational facility would be more convenient for students because of rising membership prices in the surrounding areas. This may be true for some, but if there will be a higher percentage of commuter students in the following years, an on-campus recreational facility may prove inconvenient. Students who commute to school may choose a recreational facility closer to where he or she lives, rather than coming back to campus to use the facility. The increasing prices may or may not affect a student’s decision to use an on-campus versus off-campus facility, when the cost of convenience is heavily weighed.
This argument can be strengthened dramatically if supporting evidence for each of these assumptions was stated. Figuring out why the student enrollment is projected to double, and why students choose to attend Tusk University will help the author make her point. Sending a survey to students of major deciding factors when choosing a university that is right for them would also be helpful. A survey could also improve the author’s claims about the existing facilities, and whether or not they are adequate for each student’s wants and needs. The author fails to show evidence of increasing prices of recreational club memberships in the surrounding areas, which takes away from the credibility of her statements.
The author claims that building the new recreational facility at Tusk University would both attract new students and better serve the needs of the current student body. This claim may prove true, but the author fails to provide support to prove this to be true. To support the current conclusion, the author must find out why students choose Tusk University, and provide conclusive evidence that this new facility will, in fact, attract new students and better serve the needs of the current student body.
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