Mary Liz Flavin | news editor
Sept. 16, 2021
Students gathered together in the School of Law, excited to address new concerns that arise from the student body.
Sunday September 12, the Student Government Association held their second meeting for the 2021-2022 school year.
The SGA is a student-led governing body at Duquesne University. It’s objective is to bring attention to problems and changes that students want addressed to offices on campus that can help enact change. These changes can range from directly voicing concerns to offices on campus or connecting students to offices in question.
Alanna Battle, a new member of SGA, is looking forward to what SGA has to offer.
“I’ve always been interested in student government. You get a better understanding of all the activities that are happening in a broader sense on campus,” Battle said.
There are a few ways students can get directly involved. They can either attend a senate meeting and become a Senator-at-Large (SAL) or they can work their way into becoming a senator. As a SAL, students can serve office hours and join committees.
Once they have attended two consecutive meetings and served four office hours, they can petition to become a senator. As a senator, they are required to serve on two committees and serve one office hour a week.
There is one Senate seat for every two 200 students in each of the following schools: School of Business, School of Health Science, College of Liberal Arts, School of Education, School of Pharmacy, School of Law, School of Nursing, School of Natural and Environmental Science and the School of Music.
The Standing Committees include Communications and Public Relations, Finance, Government Operations, Organization Oversight, Student Life and the Diversity, Inclusion and Identity Committee.
The SGA allows students meet with University administrators to discuss and give feedback on upcoming changes to the university. This way, students can make sure that new rules that come out benefit them in the long run according to Jessica Schmitz, president of the Student Government Association.
Two representatives from each academic school are in the senate, but the number of representatives varies based on the number of students in the school. Senators can also come from certain aspects of student life, Greek Life and various organizations to gain a wider perspective of student concerns and needs on campus.
Schmitz finds that having representatives from different academic areas they are able to tackle more issues with a broader perspective.
“By having representatives of different academic areas of interest, we are able to address a wider range of student needs. If we only had liberal arts and business senators, we’d only have a very limited scope of what needs to be addressed on campus,” Schmitz said.
According to Schmitz, 90% of the time students can relay their concern to any member of the SGA including a senator or an executive. Most student life concerns are brought to the student life committee’s and the Vice President of Student Life’s attention, and they proceed to meet with the corresponding office they need.
The SGA works with university administration to find a solution to tackle university-wide issues.
“It’s important for students to remember that we hear their concerns,” Shmitz said.
Students can get involved by attending an SGA meeting every other Sunday. Meeting times are posted on the SGA Instagram account or students can add their email to the SGA Campus Link.