SGA continuing concern for student safety

As the spring semester kicks off, the Student Government Association has once again revved up for action.
At its first official meeting  Jan. 26, the SGA welcomed new member Jake Grinbergs as an SGA delegate.
In other news, the ongoing issues with blue light security poles remain. Delegate Catie Weligiz has been a longtime proponent for campus safety projects and has worked tirelessly to ensure safety across campus.
In her efforts, Weligiz put together a survey asking commuters and residence alike to answer questions about the blue security poles around campus. Eighteen percent of students responded and the results seemed clear: the majority of those who responded had never had any orientation regarding proper use of the devices.
More shockingly, responses from 10 percent of respondents showed that even when the security pole was activated, the response time from Public Safety was dismal or completely nonexistent.
“So, what I guess we’re seeing here is that this is still an important project. People need to be oriented and responded to when they feel unsafe,” Weligiz said.    

In unrelated news, the SGA will continue a plan of stricter funding policies. After new waves of students utilized SGA fund last semester, the group was careful to make sure that their practices matched their constitution. The SGA requires funding exceeding $2,000 to seek their approval and that of the Finance Board at least two weeks in advance of a trip or major expense event.
The SGA, known for being generous and supportive of educational opportunities off campus, was having a hard time saying no.
The issue came up again Tuesday when the group discussion veered toward the definition of “advisor” came up regarding club and class trips.
“When we say an advisor, we need to be clear as to what the person is responsible for. Are they and active member of the trip or are they providing transportation,” said SGA Advisor Melissa Paradee.
Conversation erupted around the table almost immediately, both from those in support of stronger policies and those in favor of more independence when young adults are traveling.
Vice President of Academics Dan Rivers’ answer was that of consistency.
“We can’t keep making exceptions. We’re kind of saps. If there’s a way it should be done in The Constitution, than that’s how we should do it. If we don’t like how it’s done, we should change. But for this instance, we should do it how it should be done,” said Rivers.
The discussion that followed led to the consensus that an advisor in the case of off-campus trip fulfills the functions of leadership while participating in the events of the advisees.
In other news, College Court is looking for four new members to fill its ranks. Students may apply by picking up an application in the SGA office on the second floor of the Campus Center.
SGA meetings are open to students, staff, faculty and the public. Join them Tuesdays at 5 p.m. to share your thoughts, ideas, concerns or questions.

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