Student Elections Signal a Troubling Student Apathy

Student involvement is down in nearly every campus organization at St. John’s, but most surprisingly in Student Government Inc.

For the second time in three years, an Executive Board ticket ran unopposed. There was no election, just an announcement that the only ticket in the race had, in effect, won by default. Elections are now necessary only to choose the less powerful representatives. It would seem that an organization so closely tied to the student experience would not suffer from a shortage of members to this extent.

The E-board members of Student Government have the power to make great improvements and are the only direct link the student body has to the Rev. Donald J. Harrington, C.M., president of St. John’s.

Student Government is also in control of the $60 activity fee each student pays. It alone allocates funds to the student organizations. It doesn’t make sense to pay the fee without taking an interest in the people who put your money to work.

There is no shortage of complaints at St. John’s. Students are often upset about the quality of campus dining services, Residence Life policies and funding for their organizations. Voicing your opinions does no good if you are not willing to put in the work to make positive changes. Complaints go unanswered when there is no one there to take action.

There is no reason for a university of this size to have such problems. If every student joined just one club, think of the effect it would have. Think of the good that would come if hundreds of people showed up at every Student Government meeting.

Change is the result of the implementation of good ideas and hard work. The more people get involved, the more ideas there will be and it would be, certain that every student’s voice was heard.

At times, the apathy on this campus seems like a problem too big to fix, but it really isn’t. The solution is simple and it begins with the individual student. By showing even a modicum of interest in the workings of the University, even the lowliest freshman undeclared major can change St. John’s for the better.