SG can’t solve most students’ complaints

Supplemental+instructors+like+graduate+student+Ning+Ovathanasin+help+tutor+undergrads+in+tough+classes.+Students+asked+SG+to+fund+more+SI+leaders%2C+which+they+did+in+March.+Photo+by+Christine+Capozziello
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SG can’t solve most students’ complaints

Supplemental instructors like graduate student Ning Ovathanasin help tutor undergrads in tough classes. Students asked SG to fund more SI leaders, which they did in March. Photo by Christine Capozziello

Supplemental instructors like graduate student Ning Ovathanasin help tutor undergrads in tough classes. Students asked SG to fund more SI leaders, which they did in March. Photo by Christine Capozziello

Supplemental instructors like graduate student Ning Ovathanasin help tutor undergrads in tough classes. Students asked SG to fund more SI leaders, which they did in March. Photo by Christine Capozziello

Supplemental instructors like graduate student Ning Ovathanasin help tutor undergrads in tough classes. Students asked SG to fund more SI leaders, which they did in March. Photo by Christine Capozziello

Chris Persaud

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Supplemental instructors like graduate student Ning Ovathanasin help tutor undergrads in tough classes. Students asked SG to fund more SI leaders, which they did in March. Photo by Christine Capozziello

Students have been complaining to Student Government since March. They want more and cheaper parking, functional class registration, better campus shuttle service, and 50 other things. SG can’t do anything about most of them, won’t do anything about some of them, but can do something about a few of them.

Since March, SG has held four focus groups to hear how students want to improve FAU, the latest being in October.

Recently, the UP asked SG officials what actions have been taken to address the 53 ideas they’ve so far received.

According to Boris Bastidas, speaker of the Boca House, SG doesn’t have the power to do much about most of them. However, something has been (or can be) done to follow through on some suggestions.

Bastidas told the UP in an email that another focus group is being planned for “just before the semester ends.” As of press time, an exact date, time and location have yet to be confirmed.

Here are some of the biggest complaints from the focus groups, as well as those that SG is addressing or plans to address. For the full list, go to the UP’s SG blog, OwlWatch.

Biggest Complaints

Improve the campus shuttle

SG can’t change the Boca campus shuttle route. Although SG can fund a new shuttle, SG has no plans to do so, said Speaker of the House Boris Bastidas.

Get more parking.

SG officials say they can’t  increase parking.  At the first focus group in April, Bastidas said he hopes FAU will build a new parking garage, but SG has neither the money nor authority to do so.

Improve class registration. 

SG legislators wanted to poll students this fall, asking if the technology fee should pay for server upgrades, but SG President Ayden Maher vetoed that since upgrades were already underway. Upgrades will come March 2012.  The tech fee is $5.16 per credit hour ($61.92 for 12 credits).

Lower parking fines. 

The Boca House and SG Senate tried putting a question on the fall ballot asking if parking fines should be decreased. It was vetoed by Maher and the vice president of Student Affairs, Charles Brown. SG can’t directly control parking fines.

Complaints Addressed

More recycling bins.

In March, the House passed a bill to spend $619 on five recycling bins for the Breezeway cafe. They were put in place over the summer.

Optional  meal plans for resident students. 

According to Boca House Representative Reginald Horace, SG is petitioning resident students on this issue.  Afterwards, they’ll take the results to Chartwells.   As of press time, there is no set date on when the petitioning will end, or when they’ll show the results to Chartwells.

More NightOwls drivers.

According to NightOwls Director Amanda Dier, NightOwls plans on hiring one or two more drivers in the spring.

Fund more Supplemental Instruction leaders.

SI leaders are student-tutors who, on a weekly basis, help groups of students with difficult classes. 3,565 students attended SI sessions in the spring. Bastidas said he would request more funding next spring, when SG formulates its budget. Last March, the Boca House spent $5,152.10 on T-shirts for SI leaders.