The Lakeland Mirror

Student Government slow at the start

The+Student+Government++Association%27s+Executive+Board+Member+cubicle+in+the+Campus+Center+currently+sits+empty%2C+used+as+storage+space+for+the+Student+Success+and+Engagement+Team.
The Student Government  Association's Executive Board Member cubicle in the Campus Center currently sits empty, used as storage space for the Student Success and Engagement Team.

The Student Government Association's Executive Board Member cubicle in the Campus Center currently sits empty, used as storage space for the Student Success and Engagement Team.

The Student Government Association's Executive Board Member cubicle in the Campus Center currently sits empty, used as storage space for the Student Success and Engagement Team.

Peter Ludolph, Staff Reporter

Think back to last school year when the elections for Student Government were taking place. There was an excitement built up. Students felt like they would finally have representation that would voice concerns, opinions and ideas about all aspects of the student experience at Lakeland.
Those same students who were excited for the creation of the Student Government now have a different feeling forming. This feeling revolves more around when and where we will start seeing the Student Government on campus.
Unfortunately for Lakeland, the Student Government may not be fully functional until the beginning of the 2016-17 school year, according to Joseph Legate, junior accounting major and Student Government executive vice president.

Legate said, “This first semester we are in the organizing phases of the Student Government. Next semester we will begin to actually try and make some changes.”
The major project that the Student Government is working on right now is the formation of a constitution.

Legate said, “We do not officially have a constitution.”

There is a draft for the constitution that the student government is working on and they plan to have it on display for students to view, possibly in the library. Student Government is also working on establishing office hours so that students have an outlet for questions or concerns.
As to how difficult it has been to develop a constitution Legate said, “It has had its moments where it has been difficult. However, we have had the help of Eric Blacknall, associate vice president for student success and dean of students, who has had past experience with Student Governments on other campuses.”
The role of Student Government is basically to be a means of communication between the student body and the governing bodies of the college. When the Student Government is fully functional it will have meetings with open forums and hold office hours to receive input from students.

Legate said, “The main focus of Student Government is to take the concerns of the students and making sure people like Meg Albrinck (vice president for academic affairs dean of the college and professor of literature and writing) and Dan Eck, president of Lakeland College, hear students’ concerns.”
Students are welcome to voice their opinions to student leadership. However, the representatives on the Student Government have been elected to both listen to students and also to make decisions using their own judgement.

Christian Gillaspie, junior business major and Student Government vice president of academic affairs said, “We’re students as well, so we often ask ourselves what are issues that we see on campus, what would we want from this organization?”
There is some concern from Student Government officials that students are not aware of the role it plays on campus.

Legate said, “There are a lot of people who would be more interested but they do not understand the goals of the group.”

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Student Government slow at the start