SGA prepares to tackle new issues

Adriane Hardin

Student Government Association isn’t going to wimp out in the last leg of the race this semester.

SGA President Jamie Sears and other officers have laced up their running shoes as they prepare to tackle issues like enrollment growth and the class cancellation policy before the semester ends.

Brandon Copeland, vice president of Administration, said he is expecting hard work and progress to go hand in hand this semester.

*SGA plans to be directly involved with examining recent enrollment growth.

Enrollment reached a record high 17,500 students for the 2002-03 academic year, an increase of 1,000 students from the previous year.

In December, SGA passed a resolution asking administrators to develop a task force enrollment committee consisting of administrators, faculty, staff and students to research enrollment growth and offer suggestions for future growth. Sears said the student committee members may not be SGA members.

“Western should make their plans to deal with enrollment growth known to students and then let students be involved in the process,”Copeland said.

Sears said SGA will also work to develop a better relationship with the rapidly growing community college.

“Something needs to be done for those students out there, too,” Sears said. “They’re growing, and they need representation within the administration.”

*The death of a Western student on Dec. 4 prompted John Bradley, SGA executive vice president, to look into class cancellation policy.

Kenneth Rowan, a commuter student from Owensboro, was killed in a car accident during heavy snow on his way to a 9 a.m. class. The first classes canceled were those meeting at 10:00 a.m.

The decision to cancel classes, made by President Gary Ransdell and Provost Barbara Burch, is based on recommendations from facilities management and campus police on road conditions.

“We obviously try to do it before people hit the road … But you never know when the weather is going to hit,” Burch said.

Bradley, who is writing the legislation, is still studying the current process and wants to present the bill later this semester.

“If it (the cancellation) was in a timely fashion, the student who passed away might not have died,” he said.

*SGA passed a resolution asking Western to study campus and compile a list of places that are not ADA compliant.

Copeland said SGA will continue to raise awareness of disabled students on campus.

The construction on campus has left many handicapped students searching for an unbroken sidewalk.

“With the construction we’ve been having, it is cutting down on ADA compliance,” Sears said. “It’s not fair to the students who are handicapped.”

*Copeland is busy developing a scholarship in honor of Laquetta Shephard, a Louisville senior who peacefully protested the Ku Klux Klan rally held in Bowling Green last semester.

He said SGA plans to name the scholarship after Shephard and award it to student activists.

The first SGA meeting of this semester will be held at 5 pm Jan. 21 in Downing University Center room 305.

Reach Adriane Hardin at [email protected]