SGA is planning for the new school year with events and ways to get involved in the community.
Every year, SGA plans events to bring students together, and they are spread throughout the two semesters. This year, SGA plans to host multiple events that have happened in previous years which include:
- ACU Fest
- AMP Up
- Tree lighting and Christmas celebration
- Election Week
- Join Week
- Campaign events, such as Green Week and Kindness Day
These events are already being planned by SGA, and student representatives are adding more to the list as the semester goes on. The leaders of SGA have put an emphasis on being relational this year, said Alli Dimmitt, SGA president.
SGA is planning events that have not yet happened before, but engage students on campus. This will include an outdoor mini golfing event at night. This will include glow in the dark golf balls and fairways lined with glow sticks. This is one of a few new events happening this year.
“A lot of the events that we have for students serve a two-fold purpose: one, to get to the perspective senators” said Dimmitt, senior political science major from Naples, Florida. “Second, to engage with the student body and make sure that we are not just guessing at what they want or guessing at what events they find engaging.”
SGA has also been brainstorming on ways they can improve the way the Senate works. Dimmitt and Nathan Marshall, SGA vice president, have planned to make every minute count in their meetings.
The weekly meetings this year are aimed to double productivity. This productivity will include faster timing in getting into the business they need to discuss and the creation and discussion of bills.
The organization also is putting a focus for Senate to write their own bills. It is providing a template for writing legislation. This helps them understand how to write bills while also supporting idea-generation.
“What we want to do is use a lot of the information that we have to get people excited about Senate and to show them what they can do,” said Marshall, senior finance and information systems major from McKinney. Marshall also describes an encouraging atmosphere for this year’s senators.
Senators will also be up for a chance to receive scholarships. This year will be the second year that it will be offered. These scholarships are offered to senators who exceed expectations in their time in Senate. This will also be an encouraging factor in the meetings and writing legislation. There will be around ten scholarships that will be given out this school year.
These bills have helped the university to make decisions in the past. A recent decision that was made was a change to the minimum wage on campus. The minimum wage now has been changed to $8. SGA was involved in discussions with the Office of Human Relations and the Department of Finance regarding pay for student employment for the last two years. SGA submitted a proposal spring semester with this change. The first step was to raise to $8 and hour with a plan for raising it to $10 in the future.
Over 70% of students are already making over $8 an hour, according to a press release by office Dr. Phil Schubert, president of the university, but making this change will still require around $28,000 in estimated cost for the fiscal year of 2024.
SGA is starting its recruitment for new members of the Senate. Dimmitt is currently a wildcat week student director and she is finding ways to make SGA known to incoming freshman.
“I love how intertwined my roles are,” said Dimmitt. “I think it is such a unique opportunity for me to get to know these communities and those people that want to represent, but need that extra push and need that extra encouragement. ” I can ask what would you have appreciated and how would you have felt more supported in getting those students where they need to be.
SGA will market to students through departments this year. The SGA leaders will be reaching out to be in departmental emails and placing flyers in buildings around campus. SGA will also be using social media as a marketing tool. The interest meetings to join are Aug. 30, Sept. 1 and Sept. 4. These meetings will be held each day at 11 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Elections will take place on Sept. 7-8.