Madison Marion, right, and Dillon Nicholson host an SGA meeting in the Reaud  Building, Feb. 1. UP photo by Trace Cowan.

Madison Marion, right, and Dillon Nicholson host an SGA meeting in the Reaud Building, Feb. 1. UP photo by Trace Cowan.

Lamar University Student Government Association president, Dillon Nicholson, and vice president, Madison Marino, are pushing to improve everything from Lamar parking policy to student opportunities. 

Nicholson led SGA House meeting Feb. 1 to discuss the group’s goals for the semester. 

“We’re pushing for accountability across divisions,” Nicholson said. “We’re meeting with the dean of students to make sure that inter-fraternity counsel bylaws are legitimate and being followed. We’re making sure the Setzer (Student) Center is opening on time and that it has what the students want.”

Nicholson said SGA is hoping to improve Gray Library’s hours.

“Other universities have their libraries open (until) 3 a.m. — we’ve asked students and they feel the Lamar library should be similar,” he said. 

SGA is also trying to find solutions to student reported problems with campus parking policy. 

Marino said the organization takes polls to make sure the things they push for are actually wanted by students. 

“Recently, many students have complained that Lamar’s ticketing for parking violations has been too severe,” she said. “I’m trying to gather more data on that so I can have a discussion later on with someone at the Lamar police station.”

SGA was a driving force behind the Setzer Student Center renovation, Marino said. 

“(In 2010) they took a poll to ask if students would pay more fees for the center to be improved, and the poll worked,” she said. 

Nicholson said the SGA administration has a difficult job but tries to represent the student body.

“We’re trying to make sure the students are represented in a realm which is ultimately controlled by people with six-figure salaries, doctoral degrees and, honestly, just people who are very qualified to do what they do,” he said. “However, despite any given credentials, they still must listen to the students to do the best job possible.”

Nicholson said there are limits to what SGA can accomplish. 

“We may see something and say this is what students want, but there’s a bottom dollar to worry about,” he said. “Our job is a matter of reconciling those two differences.” 

Students have a variety of options to get involved with SGA. 

“If the students want to participate they can join our Org Sync portal — it has our office times, meeting times for the House, Senate, joint sessions, polls,” he said. “We’re also active on Facebook.” 

Marino said students can represent their student organization and run SGA. 

Meetings are held on the first and third Thursday of each month in 104 Reaud Building.

Story by Trace Cowan, UP contributor

 

Learn more about Lamar University at lamar.edu

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