Our View: Campus communication

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The “Dixie Life” has been built and branded by Dixie State University Student Association for students to get involved and be part of the university life.

DSUSA has its jobs: to plan and put on events, as well as to effectively govern as a middle man between the student body and the administration and board of trustees.

Dixie Sun News’ job is to report on what is happening at DSU, and that includes covering events and making sure the average student has access to a local and accurate news source.

Possibly the most important aspect of our job is to be accurate, but our staff has found it difficult to be as such when we count on DSUSA and other campus organizations to give us the information we need, and it too often falls short of our standards because it is inaccurate.

DSUSA made transparency a priority at the beginning of this semester as far as communicating with other organizations on campus, but that effort seems to have slowed. 

We understand people are busy —  we know as well as anyone what being a busy college student entails. The problem is that we’ve found it difficult to communicate with campus organizations when their own internal communication seems to be lacking.

More than once we have been told the wrong person to get information from, or that it is unknown in general who is running what within campus organizations. Events  are becoming a bit muddled and unorganized —  or in some cases canceled completely without explanation. From an insider perspective, and we wonder if DSUSA is so focused on student involvement that it’s been difficult to keep up with itself.

Students turn to the campus calendars for event information, but when the calendars linked to from the DSU website have sometimes been wrong, how does that inaccuracy reflect the professionalism of those who are running it? This shouldn’t be a hassle. We check our dates with members of DSUSA constantly to be sure we plan efficiently, but it reflects poorly on the organization in charge when dates end up being wrong. 

Our job becomes difficult when we ready ourselves to cover an event only to find out the event has passed because we were given wrong information from the people who are supposed to be available to communicate and confirm things. We cannot be expected to report on student government happenings when we are given incorrect —  or no —  information from the very people who ask us to report.

President Biff Williams has said time and again he wishes for more involvement with the students and the community. In an email he sent to DSU staff and faculty last week he said, “It is my goal to exhaust every means of communication so that we keep everyone informed with regards to the happenings on campus.”

“We are Dixie” and we are proud of it. We want to be involved as much as possible, but it has become a difficult task.

For students’ sakes, we ask that student government makes itself as transparent as it strives to be. If its very members don’t know who is in charge of planning which events during a busy time maybe DSUSA is holding too many events.