SGA discusses student rights, campus parking and upcoming events


With just one resolution on the agenda, the Student Government Association used Thursday’s meeting to cover topics such as student concerns, parking and upcoming events.

President Ryan Stanley gave a report on the most recent Kansas Board of Regents and Students Advisory Council meeting he attended. He and the student government presidents from the other universities spoke about student rights in the classroom: freedom of speech, professor evaluations, fixed syllabuses and timely grades. According to Stanley, the Council put together a proposal for KBOR discussing each of those topics.

“We are looking to present some of those things to our provost and see what changes we can have at Fort Hays,” he said. “Not everything outlined in the proposal to KBOR was relevant to Fort Hays, but our administration would appreciate hearing our thoughts on them.”

Stanley later explained during the open forum the University of Kansas has the most concern for timely grades. FHSU has an expectation that assignments be graded two weeks after the due date. The main concern for FHSU Stanley spoke the most about was professor evaluations.

“One thing I’ve noticed is that if we fill out a professor evaluation and they get poor evaluations, that professor’s still going to that same class the next semester, and it doesn’t seem like those evaluations go into anything other than tenure and promotional, merit-based stuff,” he said.

Stanley encouraged the senators to give him feedback on the proposal based on their own experiences.

Parking issues on campus were also discussed during the open forum. Vice President Austin Ruff sits on the university’s traffic committee and provided more information about a plan to replace parking spaces on the north side of Rarick Hall with flower beds for campus beautification purposes. Ruff said the committee’s last meeting was in March, and at that point, the plan was very much in an “infancy stage.” According to Ruff, his main question was if parking spaces will be added elsewhere. There was no answer at the time.

“I’m hoping they’ll come up with some kind of a plan by the next meeting,” he said.

The next meeting will either be at the end of the month or the beginning of May.

Several senators gave input on the issue. Changing parking passes to allow students to park in a greater number of spaces and conducting a survey to collect data on students’ frustrations were among the ideas discussed.

As for upcoming events, SGA’s Big Event is on Saturday. According to Community Relations Director Emma Day, 207 volunteers have signed up to help with a number of projects. Volunteers can expect an email from Day on Friday morning containing information about registration and when and where the projects are taking place.

“When you show up, you’ll register, get your t-shirt and then we’ll send groups out to certain projects, so you’ll know where to go and you’ll have your project leader’s name,” Day said.

SGA is also hosting another university Open Forum, similar to the one which took place last semester, on Wednesday. A panel of representatives from Residential Life, Student Engagement, Health and Wellness Services and the University Police Department will answer questions from 5-6:00 p.m. in the Black and Gold Room.

According to Senator Ashley Schafer, students who attend the forum, ask questions and promote the event on social media will receive raffle tickets for a chance to win a gift card.

The next SGA meeting is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on April 27 in the Eagle Communications Hall of the Robbins Center.