Editorial: Stop student apathy

Cartoon by Taylor Lutz When the going gets tough, the social media complaints get going. Wait, that’s the saying, right? Student apathy is an ongoing problem at EC, and it’s only exacerbated by the near constant complaints online. Everyone is mad about something, yet so few are getting involved. Don’t believe us? Here are some examples of places where student involvement could use significant improvement. As in it needs a complete overhaul, not just a remodel. Support for athletics Our athletes are, quite frankly, kick ass more often than not. Our wrestling team just took home the CCIW conference championship in one of the closest competitions in history. And our next president is the king of athletics. After all, his “work hard, play hard” motto is reminiscent of a pre-game pep-talk in the locker room. For some reason, though, our stands are consistently barren. There are some diehard fans (shout out to the guy with the BlueJay flag), but the rest of the campus is admittedly unconcerned with our sports teams. This is college. Those athletes are your peers and community. Paint your damn face at least once and cheer them on, and not just when you can tailgate at homecoming. You’re not fooling anyone, we know that’s a celebration of beer not football. Student Government Association representatives For part of the school year SGA was unable to vote due to a lack of membership. This was in spite of their well thought-out PR, which included an inundation of information through display cases, social media, and the campus portal. In true EC fashion, it was still difficult to find representatives. They’ve thankfully inducted enough members to be a functioning student government, but empty seats are common on the board. And the voting process is always a gimmick because there are fewer candidates than available spaces. If you’re complaining about issues on campus and not actively working to fix them, you’re part of the problem. The easiest remedy is to join the board, it’s not a huge commitment and it gives you a very active voice. The influence of holding a student government position is one that should be highly coveted, not something SGA has to beg people to fulfill. Advocating for college students For one week of the semester, students almost cared about an issue bigger than themselves. They rallied around phones and Twitter accounts to implore Illinois’ officials to keep supporting students through the MAP grant. The turnout of some of these events, like the phone bank, was fairly low. But the overarching atmosphere of true passion and activism was exciting. After the funding was cut, it seemed that the shiny newness of caring wore off and gave way to even deeper apathy. Losing sucks, especially when it is directly affecting students in need. Instead of throwing in the towel, though, students should be rallying behind other ways to make college more affordable. Writing for The Leader The #1 college newspaper in the state somehow gets a lot of shit from its own campus. In fact, one of our staff had a friend respond to the news of our accolades with, “Really? Do people read that?” Add the social media complaints about how much The Leader totally blows, and we’ve got quite the hated publication . The best part is, none of the people complaining have ever even stepped foot inside the newsroom. They have not pitched story ideas, chased down public figures for interviews, sat through long lectures, and written a 700 word story just to have it scrapped from the publication last minute. Your 140 character complaint about the newspaper doesn’t make a difference, but your involvement on the staff does.

 

These are just some of the ways students are escaping responsibility for their own campus. Look around at the bulletin boards, peruse the portal, or talk to your friends about their involvements. There’s roles out there you are perfect for and groups just waiting for your contributions. We would list more examples, but a shit newspaper doesn’t really have the time or talent anyways.