For years, The Leader has pleaded for a representative government where student organizations are mandated a seat at the table. On March 8, that is exactly what we got.
SGA’s last meeting saw them approve a new constitution which mandates that each student organization have a representative attend a monthly meeting with SGA.
While SGA meetings have always been open to the student body, its previous constitution has often led to issues surrounding student funds. In the past, SGA’s meeting were characterized by a half empty boardroom as the invitations extended to student organizations to attend often went ignored.
This is a crucial step towards increased transparency with SGA, the only organization on campus that holds the purse strings for every other student club on campus. Keeping student leaders within the loop is perhaps one of the best moves taken by SGA and we believe that this demonstrates SGA’s willingness to create a more representative government.
Though some may view mandatory monthly SGA meetings as yet another tiresome chore that clubs must begrudgingly tolerate, the importance of this change should not be undersold. The only way to build a functional and thriving campus culture is through face-to-face communication with the various leaders on EC’s campus and there has to be some kind of incentive to encourage this participation.
Without that communication, we have seen the campus culture lean more towards apathy than anything else. Events become ill-attended, clubs die and confusion ensues. Do not forget that SGA is the organization that has the ear of the administration, and they are supposed to be voicing the concerns that we as students have.
We need to do away with the days where the communication between clubs and SGA consists of endless emails that get sink to the bottom of our inboxes. Real progress happens when our campus’ brightest and most active minds get together and make decisions together.
With these monthly meetings, we are contributing more minds to the think tank that the administration relies on for student feedback. If we as students seek to make real, meaningful change on campus communicating with our student government is how we do it.
While The Leader’s funding being attached to student government still leaves room for inherent dangers, these mandated meetings increase the transparency between SGA and the student press allowing us to more effectively inform the student body.
Overall SGA’s willingness to include The Leader in their dealings bodes well for a productive relationship. This also holds true for the rest of the student body who wishes to establish a clear line of communication with SGA.
But let us not forget that no amount of government mandates can force students to participate, no matter how easy they make it for everyone else. So let us all make the effort to battle the apathy that has plagued this campus for far too long, because we all stand to benefit from a campus where we actually talk to each other.
The new constitution takes effect in fall of 2018 and though this editorial board will be long gone by then, we are hopeful that this fresh start will facilitate a revitalized campus.