By Shea Stine
“You guys are trying to change a culture here,” Fr. John Doctor, faculty advisor said. “It’s going to take some time to do, but you need to make SGA the governing voice again. Once you do that, a lot of the problems you guys are talking about are going to be much easier to deal with.”
Nearing the end of Tuesday’s Student Government Association meeting, Vice President Mary Argana asked Doctor for any advice or comments based on what he heard at the meeting.
The problems that Doctor was referring to can be summed up as a general apathy among the student body towards student government. Tuesday’s meeting addressed or began to address many of those problems.
The first and most glaring problem is that only eight of the 16 senate seats are filled because not enough students ran to fill the senate. President Gino Grivetti suggested that the senate be comprised of 16 at large candidates instead of having four per class in order to keep this from happening in the near future. Grivetti, Argana and the rest of the senators are also planning to appoint eight more senators to the SGA at next weeks meeting.
These senators have been chosen to represent different areas of Quincy University such as North Campus, Blessing Nursing School, Commuter and non-traditional students and the Great River Aviation School. Grivetti and the rest of the SGA members hope these representatives will be able to bring perspective from the other areas of student life at Quincy University.
In addition, the members all discussed the new constitution. Senate member Matt Anderson has been researching and working closely with Grivetti to finalize the constitution. Grivetti and the rest of the SGA said that the framework Anderson provided was a big help and good.
While there was a lot of debate among the senate members about topics such as election times, all the members agreed to keep the preamble, purpose and ethics sections of the constititution. The SGA members will be discussing finer points on the constitution throughout the week and have a constitutional convention next Tuesday to finalize it.
One way that SGA is trying to change the culture is by getting students more involved. Grivetti has developed a short 10 question survey for students to give information on campus life. Topics in the survey include maintenance, security, events, communication between the students and the university and mission and ministry. The members will be looking over the questions, and Grivetti hopes to finalize the survey to be sent out on Survey Monkey by the next meeting.
Senator Bridget Hunkins pushed for some or all of SGA members to be in meetings about the budget, which no students are currently allowed in.
“This is about the students,” Hunkins said. “We need to have somebody in those meeting giving the student voice. A lot of the students don’t know what’s going on, and they need to know that we are representing them. If nobody else fights for that, I will.”
The senate hopes to create change on campus and they are hopeful that they will be able to.
“It’s a learning process,” Doctor said. “Don’t lose your drive to help. It may not happen overnight, but it has happened before where the SGA is very involved, and it can happen again.”