SGA encourages students to reach out at Student Body Town Hall


Student Government Association Vice President Lyndi Rose speaks during SGA's second Student Body Town Hall on Nov. 29 in the Sarah and Daniel Opperman Auditorium. 

The Central Michigan University student body was able to learn more about what Student Government Association has accomplished this semester.

A "Student Body Town Hall" took place at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Sarah and Daniel Opperman Auditorium, and attracted around 40 attendees. It was livestreamed on SGA's Facebook page, which received more than 100 views throughout the event.

Student Government Association meets at 7 p.m. Mondays in the Bovee University Center Auditorium. Meetings are free to attend, but students must bring their CMU Global ID cards to check in prior to entering. 

The purpose of the Town Hall was to invite the student body to voice their opinions regarding SGA and the university, as well as ask questions to a panel of SGA executive board members. 

The panel consisted of SGA President Jake Hendricks, Vice President Lyndi Rose, Senate Leader Caroline Murray, House Leader Anna Whitwam and Treasurer Chase Delor. 

This was the second annual Student Body Town Hall hosted by SGA; last year's event brought in a similar amount of attendees. While some questions were asked in-person at last year's event, one difference this year was all questions were received online anonymously. 

Panelists fielded questions regarding initiatives such as the Stamp Out Aggression campaign, the Menstrual Hygiene Product initiative, Neuroscience reorganization legislation and the Fall Break legislation.

SGA took the event as an opportunity to learn more about the on-campus issues that students at CMU care about. One anonymous post was about residential restaurants, asking if there was a way SGA could eliminate "midday snacks" in cafeterias and replace them with extended lunch and dinner periods for better food options. 

"Senators, write that down," Senate Leader Murray said to Senators in the audience, suggesting that SGA take the suggestion as a possible Senate project. 

"We've found that the cafeterias on campus are very responsive to student feedback, and we would love to continue that trend," Murray said. "Legislation can be written and we can work on that."

When an anonymous student asked if there is a way to eliminate the mandatory meal plan in residential halls, Vice President Rose commended the idea and urged students to voice more opinions to SGA so legislation can be created. 

Students who attended the forum felt they had a better understanding of the CMU community after hearing all of SGA's initiatives. Pigeon freshman Brittany Richmond went to the forum hoping to find out more about what was going on around campus. 

"I'm a first year, and I like knowing my community," she said. "(In my hometown), I always knew what was going on. But CMU is a much larger community, and I don't always know what's going on. Tonight's meeting kind of centralized everything."

Rochester freshman Grace Busch appreciated learning more about SGA's involvement on campus. 

"I'm a first year student here, finishing up my first semester," Busch said. "I wanted to come and see what SGA and the CMU community had to say. Now I know a lot more about how people can go to (SGA) meetings or get involved with SGA and be connected.

One of the most common answers from the panelists: Get more engaged with SGA. The panelists encouraged students to bring their ideas to SGA so they can be put into motion. 

“SGA has the power to make changes, but that can only come from the students,” she said. “If you’re passionate about this, help us make the change.”