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SA townhall outlines agenda for administrators

Student Association, SA, townhall, Francisco Alvarez
Francisco Alvarez, a sophomore, asks student leaders and university administrators what is being done to improve the responsiveness of Fix-It during the Student Association townhall Wednesday evening. Francis Rivera | Assistant Photo Editor

The Student Association’s first townhall of the year drew about 100 students to the Grand Ballroom in Marvin Center on Wednesday.

About a dozen representatives from the Student Association joined administrators from the Dean of Students office, Office of the Provost, Multicultural Students Services Center and Athletics Department to share their responsibilities on campus and invite questions from the crowd.

The speakers explained new policies and programs, such as changes to Student Judicial Services, the new SA fund allocation process, and diversity and inclusion initiatives.

SA Senators from each school within the University introduced themselves and fielded questions ranging from DegreeMAP problems to student research opportunities to teaching assistants who lack English language proficiency.

Junior Timur Selimovic demanded to know what Elliott School of International Affairs representatives were doing to secure University funding and attention for the school.

“I feel misrepresented in the ESIA,” Selimovic said. “I don’t feel the resources we receive match the ninth ranked international affairs school in the country.”

Francisco Alvarez, a sophomore living in Munson, wanted to know why Fix-It failed to respond to his urgent requests for service.

“It was pouring rain, and I literally had plaster falling down from my ceiling,” Alvarez said. He explained that the chain of command within the Fix It program was confusing and frustrating.

“I was led around a lot,” Alvarez said. “When I called in my issue, the sixth person they transferred me to was the second person I was transferred to,”

Associate Dean of Students Tim Miller interjected into SA President John Richardson’s answer and told students whose requests were being ignored by Fix It to e-mail his staff at the Center for Student Engagement.

“I can’t guarantee we will fix it tomorrow, but you will get a response tomorrow letting you know we are working on it and we are aware of it,” Miller said.

The SA plans to host a townhall specifically for housing issues later this month and a townhall for career services in October.

The event lasted one hour and 45 minutes, and although only two dozen students remained at the end, SA Vice President of Student Activities Aria Varasteh, who administered the event, said he was pleased with the turnout.

“The administrations has their hands full after tonight, and that’s a good thing,” Varasteh, a junior, said.





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