Printing complaints, new study spaces and other items were discussed in the most recent Student Government Association (SGA) meeting for the ABAC campus. The meeting opened with a report from the senator for the School of Agriculture and Natural Resources. The new Agricultural Education Elementary Program is in its trial phase, with plans to have it open in the spring or fall semester next year. Business majors have a new study space in Lewis Hall. On Oct. 26 from 2-4 p.m. in Lewis Hall, a business roundtable hosted by 15-16 businesses will teach students soft skills.
The senator for the school of Arts and Sciences met with the new dean to discuss complaints from students about an error with printing. The printers’ default was set to color, which overcharged students. Students were told to go to tech support to talk about their accounts. President of SGA, Jake Harris, discussed the great turnout for Constitution Day. He also spoke about complaints from students regarding the lack of accessibility for disposing of feminine products in the college’s bathrooms. The SGA then opened the floor to students to voice their concerns. Other concerns included: lack of cameras in the parking lots and gym and putting a microwave in the student center for commuters.
On Sep. 30, executive student officers across all five Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College instructional sites convened at the Bainbridge campus. Emily Cunningham, the Executive Vice President for the Bainbridge site, was the chairperson for the meeting. Jake Harris spoke highly about the meeting because “it was the first step towards a culture of unity across all five of our instructional sites.”
With the consolidation of Bainbridge in 2018, ABAC’s network now stretches five locations, including Tifton, Moultrie, Blakely and Donalsonville. Harris reemphasized his focus on uniting all the campuses by saying, “We’re really trying to create a culture of unity, of course, within each student on every site but now, with five different sites, we’re trying to create a culture of unity, harmony and civility on every site.”
Aside from working on the external factors, Harris and his cabinet also addressed their internal factors; at the close of the previous spring semester, three positions total remained vacant including two for the School of Nursing and one in the Stafford School of Business, “We filled our last vacancy in the School of Ag and Natural Resources, Senator Louie Canevari will be serving, along with Sydney Conley.”
There are still vacancies elsewhere: “We’re still looking for two nursing students to serve at the senator position,” said Harris. The session went on with each senator voicing their concerns for the coming weeks. To truly understand the concerns afflicting students, senators must meet several constituency hours each week, where they have office hours and any student can come to talk to them. Harris also said, “Each of our senators meets with their respective deans at least once a month, and that’s laid out in our constitution. So they have the opportunity to report to their fellow senators and students that come to the meetings.”
A few major concerns were voiced afterward by Harris himself during his presidential court. When the floor was open, no students gave feedback. An ongoing concern that wasn’t addressed at the meeting was recycling. “It’s something big that we’ve heard. That has been voiced to the President and his cabinet, along with the Silent Study Spaces on campus,” Harris said.
With the ongoing construction on campus, the latter issue might not be able to resolve, but Harris reassured, “Within the next couple of weeks, I’m actually taking a tour with Mr. Tim Carpenter, so I can ensure that the Silent Study Spaces will be available to students upon completion.” The next SGA meeting will be on Oct. 21. Harris says they are pushing to hold the meeting at ABAC’s Moultrie campus at 5 p.m.