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Monday, May 16, 2022

Columns

Administration-student connection is still missing in SGA


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SGA and student disconnect is apparent when you consider lack of attendance, and organization communication.| Bryce Dodds/The Cougar

I didn’t know what to expect attending my first Student Government Association meeting.

The SGA kicked off its first assembly of the fall semester on August 31. During the meeting they discussed important information for students including a presentation on transportation. During this meeting it became apparent that most of the information released to the SGA members would never find its way back to the student body.

Two weeks into the semester, the administration had plenty of energy for the ‘16-17 school year. Once roll call began, each senator responded with a resounding “Go Coogs!”

Seeing a big organization like METRO discuss plans to increase ridership among students with the SGA really appealed to me. The METRO employees were knowledgeable and even showed videos of accidents along the stretch of the Purple Line that that runs along campus.

At the same time, seeing METRO present to some of the most well-informed members of our school left me scratching my head as to why METRO presents to them only. Obviously, the expectation is for senators to pass the information down to the student body. Yet the prospect of senators reporting back to their constituents with that information is unlikely.

Perhaps some sort of smaller assembly for each college and its representatives could increase student-to-representative interactions. Edwin Mascorro, a chemistry sophomore and veteran peer counselor, pushed that very idea.

During the open forum, Mascorro spoke to SGA and encouraged them to volunteer with organizations more often so they can become more visible leaders in the student’s’ eyes.

Over the summer, students graciously attended the SGA assembly en masse on a couple of controversial occasions. There were two dozen people in attendance on Wednesday.

It suddenly became evident that many students do not care about the organization until it has stepped out of line, and they are suddenly in a position to condemn it.

That is the wrong mindset for participation in any sort of politics. Participating is as easy as showing up — even if you don’t have anything to say. Going to meetings keeps you up to date on occurrences happening throughout the University and allows you to become a familiar face amongst representatives and potentially build relationships with them.

Although we place a great deal of responsibility and scrutiny upon SGA, we must never fail to remember that, like us, they are students who strive to carve and follow the best path.

Assistant opinion editor Thom Dwyer is a broadcast journalism sophomore and can be reached at [email protected]

 

 

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