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Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Student Government

SGA passes advising bill, resolution supporting Tier One initiatives


The Student Government Association had its first senate meeting of the semester on Wednesday. | Steven Chambers/The Cougar

The Student Government Association had its first senate meeting of the semester on Wednesday. | Steven Chambers/The Cougar

The Student Government Association held its first Senate meeting Wednesday and passed two of the biggest movements on the committee’s agenda:  SGAB-51004 Advising Reform and Graduation Success Act, which will decrease the student-to-adviser ratio over five years. SGA also passed a resolution that expresses its support for the UH administration and the Board of Regents in their goals of becoming a fully Tier One university.

The Advising Reform and Graduation Success Act was introduced in July and after heated debate was passed with a 23-to-1 vote with one abstention. This bill hopes to lower the student-to-adviser ratio from the University average of 293-to-1 to the NACADA recommended standard of 250-to-1.

The reform also calls for improvement in the quality of advising sessions and mandatory advising holds to be placed on students after they have completed 30, 60 and 90 credit hours. The reform will also allow for students to be able to answer surveys regarding their advising experience. In addition, profiles on students will be available to advisors so they will have more information to work with.

“Student success is very important to the University of Houston, and intervention from advising may make students significantly more successful,” SGA President Charles Haston said.

A resolution stating that SGA fully supports the UH administration and the Board of Regents in their goal to reach full Tier One status was also passed. This comes on the heels of a proposal mandating freshmen to live on campus in UH housing, which was publicly opposed by UH alumnus and State Senator John Whitmire.

The proposal would have required all new freshmen to live on campus; however, certain students would have been able to waive this requirement. To qualify for a waiver the student must demonstrate financial difficulty or have a medical need. The bill did not affect students who live with a parent, legal guardian, are married, have a child or live within a 20-mile radius of the school.

Additional reporting by Arianne Goddard.

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