Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Student Government Association: the future of Augustana

On March 26-28, Augustana students will be voting on new Student Government Association President and Vice-President. Currently stands two opposing parties. The first is presidential candidate Adam Gronewold. junior, and vice-presidential candidate Isabella Hartman, junior. The other is presidential candidate Brendan Walker, junior, and vice-presidential candidate Ella McCorkle, junior. I can fully support that both candidates have solid platforms, but Adam Gronewold and his VP have a much more tangible and stable platform to run on. Meaning they, above the other candidates, truly understand what can and should be done to improve Augustana as a whole.
Gronewold and Hartman have their platforms built on the ideation of giving more financial support and knowledge to the student body. He plans to have students be given more time to speak with the SGA Senate directly. “Twice a term,” Gronewold said, “we hope to meet in the Gavle rooms with open doors and welcoming arms. Here students can address their concerns to the Senate so that change is actually occurring.”
Gronewold, in more financial means, “… hope[s] to be working with Augustana Marketing and Human Resources to provide students with a breakdown for tuition increases, so that they understand what the increase actually reflects.”
With this approach, many of the intricate changes to our tuition will be more fully explained rather than in a passing email. This way, rather than being frustrated with Augie administration for their lackluster explanations, we can get information from someone who both cares and is a fellow student.
Most importantly regarding the student body, Gronewold has a personal goal to revise the SGA financial policy. By this, he means to “set up a legacy fund, which sets half of that money aside annually, while the rest is used for small projects on campus.” This means giving money to student-addressed issues, which can be acted upon by the SGA instead of waiting for administration to begin their processes.
However, with Walker and McCorkle’s campaign, they mean to focus on a much more personal endeavor. Walker plans to focus his SGA presidency on the mental health of this campus and her people. According to Walker, at this school, we currently have 1 counselor per 1000 students, whereas the national average for a school of our size is 1 counselor per 688 students.
Walker feels that the students at Augie both deserve and require a larger number of counselors and more than the 12 hours of counseling currently provided, free of charge. Walker and his VP, overall, wish to effect inclusivity on campus and to require that mental health on our campus be increased by way of counseling to student ratios.
Walker’s campaign interests are valiant. Mental health is a necessity on our campus and in this country, and with the academic prowess, this school holds, sustaining those numbers creates a very stressed community. Thus, the importance focused in counseling is something that should certainly be done soon.
However, Gronewold’s campaign is something that can be beneficial to everyone on this campus and will actively affect the future of this campus. If we actively focus on improving Augustana, we can begin to fix problems for which many students have been unable to get the administration’s attention.
Likewise, Gronewold wants to improve our fiscal responsibility and inform students on the usage and whereabouts of their tuition. While I believe that mental health a priority for Augustana students, fiscal responsibility is something that is persistent throughout national and student governments and will greatly help this campaign and future endeavors at this school.
Walker’s campaign focuses on the emotional side of campus, which is redeemable, but the current society we live in has focused too much on emotions and not enough on action. Gronewold is focusing on identifiable fiscal ideas which will require a lot of work but he has a lot of prior experience in management and experience in OSL and other student groups. Gronewold’s campaign, personally, is the best option for Augustana this coming election.

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Student Government Association: the future of Augustana