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Podcast: April 14, 2021

EMU announces plans for the Fall 2021 semester, a petition calls on EMU to extend the pass/fail grading option, and the Center of Entrepreneurship hosts a virtual webinar featuring the CEO of Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea.

Ronia Cabansag: On this week’s episode, EMU announces that the Fall 2021 semester will likely have a more traditional campus environment, EMU students begin a petition to extend the pass or fail grading option, and the Center of Entrepreneurship hosts a virtual webinar featuring Lisa Bee. I’m Ronia Cabansag, sitting in for Liz Hornyak, and this is the Eastern Echo Podcast.

On Wednesday, April 7, EMU announced that they will have a more traditional campus environment for the Fall 2021 semester. Depending on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic, safety precautions like social distancing and daily COVID passes may still be in place.

Geoff Larcom, the university’s Executive Director of Media Relations, highlighted a few changes to campus the students will be able to appreciate in the fall, including the newly renovated GameAbove’s College of Engineering and Technology, the renovation of the Rec/IM, and in-person class offerings. 

Additionally, single dorm rooms will continue to be offered at a discounted rate. You can find a link to the full announcement on our website.

After the Office of Records and Registration announced that the pass/fail option will not be extended for the Winter 2021 semester, ECA student Brianna Davis, started a petition on calling on the university to extend the pass/fail option through the end of this semester. 

Davis’s petition has 750 signatures. Due to the mounting support for extending pass/fail, Student Government members Senator Jeffrey Hoang, Senator Eva Long, and Speaker Azar have created an email chain as well so that students can express why this grading option should be extended. Student Government members want students to email:

Students are also being asked to cc Senator Hoang at so that Student Government can keep track of the progress of the campaign. If you have any questions you can email Speaker Azar at

On Thursday, April 8, the Center for Entrepreneurship held a webinar featuring Lisa Bee, the CEO of Sweetwaters Coffee and Tea, as part of their Entrepreneurship Speaker Series. Bee talked about the challenges of creating a national franchise, running a business in the midst of the pandemic, and the business’ new app.

Dr. Sanjib Chowdhury, a professor of management at EMU and the Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship, had this to say of the event.

Chowdhury: I think many of these events should happen on campus. Our students are learning from books, from courses, about different disciplines and different topics, but these are the events that make our students learn beyond what they learned from classrooms, from professors.

These are from people working in the field, and learning from them gives our students the extra benefit that makes them extra aware of what is going on in the field at this moment. That makes them more marketable and valuable in the job market and also with whatever they want to do in their lives.

Cabansag: As always thank you for listening. This episode was reported by Anastasia Moutzalias, Emma Henri, and Emily Bernabe, scripted by Jasmine Boyd and produced by Ethan Myers. I’m Ronia Cabansag, and this has been the Eastern Echo Podcast.