Public Comment Left At No Comment?

Every Friday at 4:15 p.m. silence occurs during the ASWSUV Senate’s public comment period. Students have yet to use this direct connection to their student government this year. In the past student input at public comment has also been minimal.

This silence at public comment usually follows the opportunity for students to hear detailed reports about the work ASWSUV does every week and leaves the Senate wondering why there is such a lack of feedback and input. Do students
really have nothing to tell the ASWSUV Senate? Do students really not have comments or contributions to make concerning topics like the smoking ban?

The ASWSUV Senate wants to know what the students think on topics like the bus routes. Are they satisfactory to everyone and fit with class schedules? Senate also wants to know if students want to see sports on this campus or anything else they think this campus needs. Senate uses public comment as a mechanism to makes changes on campus that students want and need.

Public comment is embedded in the processes of the ASWSUV Senate as a tool to connect with students, mirroring government at every level. With the high appreciation of public input at the ASWSUV Senate meetings, Senate takes on all public comment through work it does throughout the year. All Senate meetings are public and public comment allows for students to be able to attend and participate in shaping their ASWSUV government, campus and college experience.
“I know many people are upset about many topics. Approaching us and letting us know how you feel is the best way to help us help you,” said Jacob Morris, an ASWSUV senator majoring in accounting.

Although at times it may be difficult to incorporate another meeting into the busy student schedule, public comment is one of few opportunities for students to bring their voice to the table. Senate meetings are held every Friday at 4:15pm to 5:15pm in VFSC 104.

“Come at us, we’ll help you out,” said Daniel Petrila, a senior majoring in history and the ASWSUV Director of University Affairs. Many students do not yet realize that their input can make a historical change here at Washington State University Vancouver.

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