Creating timely and effective change has not been Student Government’s strong suit, and this is more apparent than ever in the debate over its new constitution.
Last semester, the Senate voted to restructure how SG functions in order to encourage more student advocacy. Since Sept. 2, when Sen. Brett Atanasio proposed the idea of changing SG to AU Student Association, SG has struggled to turn this idea into reality.
The AU Student Association would rearrange SG to operate less like the federal government and become more advocacy-oriented. The legislative and judicial branches will be replaced with a Board of Representatives and an Executive Committee. A president would oversee four vice presidents with specific jobs such as advocacy and communication. The class councils would be cut and instead those representatives will work with the deans of their respective schools.
Essentially, this plan was created to prevent internal conflicts from hindering meaningful discussion. SG is right to propose such an initiative; change is necessary and reformatting SG’s structure may be a solution.
But if the ultimate goal is to make SG less about internal conflict and more about advocacy, the current situation is embarrassing, to say the least. SG has been attempting to bend rules and fight this battle since the beginning of the semester. Now here we are with one week left, and the student body referendum on this proposal still hasn’t taken place.
Initiatives like becoming the AU Student Association are a prime example of SG’s inability to accomplish much when it comes to advocacy. SG is correct that their system should be reworked to become more conducive to representing students to the administration, but it needs to happen at the right time and with the right mindset. When an internal fight defines a change to promote the removal of internal fighting, something is wrong. If this new governing system comes out of arguments, nothing is going to change.
SG cannot seem to achieve a consensus, and the drama of trying to change their structure will undoubtedly pour into whatever new structure they choose.
Either way, until SG can get past petty arguments, no amount of reorganization is going to create positive change.≠ E