OPINION | Potential exists for student-led change

Published April 24, 2012

The joke in my family right now is that my sister is the smartest sibling, since she decided to enroll at a university in the Sunshine State, whereas I choose one in the Hoosier State.

Although I envy her and the view she will have of the Atlantic Ocean, I am saddened that she will not have the incredible and unique Butler University experience I had.
These upcoming four years at Butler would truly have been enjoyable for her.

Nevertheless, the past four years have provided me with many memories and life lessons, and I am very excited to see Butler progress.

The changes proposed or those that are already in the process of completion are much needed and will positively transform the university.

The most visible changes that my sister would have experienced are, of course, the construction projects on campus.

The new performance arts complex, the Howard L. Schrott Center, will be a nice venue that I hope will bring in more highly sought speakers.

The proposed parking garage with retail space is also a project my sister would have experienced.

Also, she could have eaten in the renovated Atherton Union dining hall, and maybe even roomed in a modernized residence hall.

But construction projects are not the only changes that are occurring on campus.

The student population has changed over the years, and I think it is necessary for certain changes to take place involving the students.

I remain convinced that the student body should change the Student Government Association and transform the format into a student senate.

Great potential is present for creating a student senate as it would involve all aspects of student organizations on campus.

The student senate would be more efficient and involve student leaders that would be driven to create change on campus, not just attend to be eligible for a student organization grant.

A great amount of research and determined energy would be needed to execute the change effectively, but ultimately it would be a sustainable project serving the Butler student population for years to come.

A majority of our peer institutions already have this format.

Secondly, if my sister should choose to become involved with Greek life on campus, then I would have hoped that she  would involve herself in the much needed changes dealing with the alcohol-related hospitalizations on campus.

I believe that in the upcoming years students associated with Greek life should devote themselves to creating a bottom-up policy dealing with the risks associated with unaccountable drinking.

The debate is always going to be centered on a policy of beer and wine only.

Rather than a decision made by administrators, chapter presidents would benefit the campus more if they were to call a meeting and create their own policy recommendations to better serve the community.

This was attempted a few years ago, but the conversation ran out of momentum.

I hope that this upcoming year, Greek leaders will find it beneficial to create a public discussion on this topic once again.

Overall, I am excited for the changes occurring on campus, and even though my sister will not be attending Butler, I have already begun to convince my younger brother.


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