Students discuss the importance of SGA’s role on campus
February 16, 2017
“I’m mostly indifferent towards SGA,” said hotel and restaurant management sophomore Rory Nimmons. “The organization doesn’t directly influence me because I think that there isn’t enough awareness. They should branch out and talk to more people. I do think that their role is important, but it could be even more important if they had more influence.” | Julie Araica/The Cougar
“I think a lot of people just don’t know what SGA is, or if they do, they don’t realize that SGA actually does impact them as students,” said communication freshman Morgan Michalec. “I do think it is important to vote because these people have the power to impact your life as a student.” | Julie Araica/The Cougar
“I always forget that SGA exists unless someone mentions them,” said engineering freshman Kiana Mills. “I don’t think of them on a daily basis, and I think that the majority of people don’t. If only 10 percent of people are voting, then they aren’t accurately representing our campus and that isn’t useful for most students.” | Julie Araica/The Cougar
“I think people didn’t vote last year because most people don’t care or think that voting will change anything,” said teaching and learning sophomore Cynthia Read. “I feel like they really need a greater presence on campus. They could send out emails telling people to vote or advertise themselves more around campus. I feel like they haven’t really done anything, so while they have the potential to be useful, they aren’t right now.” | Julie Araica/The Cougar
“I think people didn’t vote because SGA doesn’t have a big enough presence on campus,” said psychology junior Hailey Cleveland. “Most people don’t even realize that there is a need for a student government. I think if they emphasized and advertised the things that they have the power to change, then more people would vote.” | Julie Araica/The Cougar
Last year, during the University of Houston’s 2016 Student Government Association election, 4,324 students voted, only roughly 10 percent of the overall 43,774 student body population.
The 2017 election is set to begin next Wednesday Feb. 22, and The Cougar asked students why they thought there was such a small voter turnout last year, what SGA can do differently to improve voter turnout and whether they think SGA’s role is useful on campus.