Vacancies in student committees at Sonoma State offer opportunities for students to get involved and have a say in important university decisions. There are still many vacancies in student committees and the Associated Students office is making an effort to fill those positions as quickly as possible. “It is important that these seats get filled because if they remain vacant there is a lack of student voice and input into the decision making process on campus,” John Dunstan, the Associated Students’ executive Vice President and chair of the senate said, “We also find ourselves in a very interesting time in relation to decisions that are going to be happening on campus in relation to the GE pattern changes, the schools five year plan, and the Stevenson Remodel. It is a great time to serve on committees because of how much change is happening on campus and I am really excited to get student voice into these changes.” The student committees on campus have a real effect on the lives of students and can greatly impact the college experience of many. With so many big decisions being made daily, the faculty greatly benefit from having a student committee to remind them of the people that those decisions need to be benefiting. “The purpose of including students onto these committees is so that faculty can keep stuEMILIANA MARTINEZ STAFF WRITER dent perspective in mind when making important decisions that affect the campus, which of course in turn would affect the lives of students. It really is great that we have this system of shared governance when it comes to this process as it is one way that the faculty and administration show that they care about student voice and without it they may miss important ideas/perspectives that might otherwise not be noticed,” Dunstan said. Currently the seats that are filled are mainly taken by AS Senators and also the AS Executive team being the President, the Executive Vice President of Finance, and the Executive Vice President. Students feel that they should have a say in university decisions. A senior at Sonoma State Christian Oliver said, “I think it’s important to be heard as a student so that the university is making the right decisions for us.” These student committees are set in place by the university to make sure that students are heard. “Essentially the Academic Senate is a body that represents the faculty voice on campus and help to make decisions and recommendations that go to President Sakaki and her cabinet,” Dunstan said Being part of the a student committee is very important and those who choose to apply for the positions should understand the responsibilities that come with the position.
Dunstan explained, “What we expect of the committee members is that they show up to the designated meetings days for their committee, are active in the discussions that take place there, and write up a report detailing what things were talked about in the committee that they sit on.” He also explained that the vacancies in the student committees are due to students not being able to find time in their busy schedules and because they were just offered to students. Therefore it is taking some time to fill the positions. Dunstan said “The ones that I see applying are those that are driven to be involved on campus and who want their voice to be heard.” Dunstan believes that his college experience has been enhanced by his involvement in AS and at the university as a whole. He said “Being involved with AS and going to the events was the way that I was able to form friendships, bonds, and meet other students that I would otherwise not meet within my classes; and I think this is true for many others.” Being part of student government not only enhances your college career, but also sets students up for success in the future. The student committee positions are available now on orgsync under the AS Student Government page.