Recently, the campus has served as a test ground. From registration time ticketing and all-freshman housing to the New York City Program, the college has implemented pilot programs and continues to do so. As the core curriculum goes into effect this fall and students feel the effects of the other changes laid out in IC 20/20, the Student Government Association needs to fully serve as the student voice.
Only 49 more students voted in this year’s SGA election than last year’s; 83.3 percent of students did not cast their vote. The small, 49-student increase is perhaps a sign that making students aware of SGA processes is not enough to truly represent their thoughts. During this time it is particularly critical to not only show students what SGA is up to, but also to make students feel a part of the process.
Like IC Progress, previous boards have also announced plans to focus on transparency to its constituents. SGA should be applauded for its efforts in making the student voting system and board meetings more accessible to students. But it’s time to focus on going beyond being visible to the campus body by truly engaging in student opinions.
The core curriculum will change the way students experience Ithaca College. How do the new core classes change this experience, is anything lost with the additional requirements, and who can speak to that? Current students and SGA can be instrumental forces in presenting the administration with how students feel about the many changes. Next year’s SGA senators need to make sure they’re well-versed on all aspects of IC 20/20 so they can help explain what exactly this or that change means for students’ college careers. Since students wont be asking President Tom Rochon directly, the senators need to bridge this gap.
The administration needs to take student input into account as the college comes into a changed atmosphere with IC 20/20. SGA, which can streamline this input, needs to relate to students by spending time outside the SGA office doors. The only way to serve as the student voice is to hear it, face-to-face.