Our View: Expectations for student government

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Our message to the student government is simple: Be a part of us, not apart from us.

The purpose of a student government is to represent the students in collegiate matters, and we hope for nothing less this year. To our new executive council: You have an opportunity to be successful this year, and here’s what we expect from you:

Be transparent.

The student government must practice transparency. If and when any meetings occur that would directly affect the students, then the students should be allowed to not only attend those meetings, but to also voice concerns, ask questions and respond to questions or concerns from council members.

Allow us to be involved.

Make meetings in which votes happen open to students, and make sure students know about them. Send a Dmail, update the student government Facebook page, post a photo on Instagram, send out a Tweet, and post fliers. Make sure the students have no excuse for not knowing about these meetings.

Represent us.

You must represent the students at these meetings. The executive council is not here to relay to the students what the administration wants. In fact, it’s the opposite. The student government should be relaying to administration the needs and wants of the students.

We don’t expect all our wants to be accepted by administration, but we do expect you to be our voice. You are our direct channel to the administration. Be that channel. Don’t be a wall.

Be accessible.

In years past, there have been promises of face-to-face programs that would bring the student government to the students. Those ideas were never followed through. Yes, the student government offices are open during certain times, but the students need more opportunities. You can’t sit and wait for the students to come to you. You need to make the extra effort and come to the students. 

Make sure students have varying channels to communicate with you. Post fliers with your email addresses and, yes, even phone numbers. Hold open forums on the Encampment Mall every week. Allow students to voice concerns via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Be political.

While the university experience should include plenty of opportunities to have fun, it should also focus on making a positive change that will affect not only the current student body, but those in the future, as well. Stand for something other than enhancing the university social life. Get the students active in the real-world aspects of government. Help the students at DSU get the most out of their education.

For every foam dance or Wednes “D” you organize, there should also be rallies for change on campus and Directions of Dixie that aren’t administration-led. You must foster the political activist in all of us. We must be active in all aspects of our education — and government should be higher on the list than social gatherings. 

We voted you into office because we knew you were the right people for the job. That job is to be our voice. That job is to be our representation. That job is to do the will of the student body.

Will everything go smoothly? No. Will the students get everything they want? No. But if you, our elected student government, are transparent, involved, representative, accessible and political, then you will at least be fulfilling the reason you got involved in student government in the first place.