SGA Starts Town Hall Meetings

Matt Usdin

This month the Student Government Association (SGA) will launch a new initiative that aims to encourage students to take a more active role in voicing their opinions concerning campus issues. The student Task Force has devised a system in which monthly town hall-style meetings will occur that take on some of the more prominent issues facing the Colgate community. It is hoped that these meetings will provide an atmosphere in which students can easily connect to administrators in an open environment.

The Town Hall Task Force has come up with this new system with hopes of encouraging more students to take an active role in voicing their grievances and subsequently believe that more productive meetings will occur. “We really want students to come and voice their complaints within this arena,” president of the Town Hall Task Force junior Lindsay Hinzman said. “You now have the perfect place to come and voice your complaints in a constructive manner.”

The Student Town Hall Task Force, which constructed this new system of meetings, is an example of the broader Task Force initiative that began last year. Under this new system, students organize around a single mission and try to accomplish a specific goal or focus on a specific project. The Spring Party Weekend Task Force served as the initial example of Task Force activity last year and proved to be a large success.

These meetings, which will take place once a month, are set to get under way later this month. The first of these meetings is scheduled to take place on Thursday, November 20 at 7 p.m. in the O’Connor Campus Center (Coop) TV room. The main issue discussed will be Residential Life. “If you have anything at all to say about your housing situation or anything else about Residential Life please come and speak up,” SGA president senior Dave Kusnetz said. Anything about dorm problems, room selections, or any questions people may have would be great.”

Another aspect of the new town hall-style meetings is the way in which the issues to be discussed at these meetings will be chosen. The Task Force has been extremely active in taking student’s opinions into account and has set up stands at the Coop and conducted student polls in order to receive as much input as possible from students regarding which issues they believe are the most important.

“We really are very optimistic about these new town hall-style meetings,” Kusnetz said. “In my four years at Colgate nothing like this has ever been done before; we might as well try something new now. A forum in which students and administrators can speak and work together in a completely open environment will hopefully be the result.”