Our job at The Paladin is quite simple: to be a voice of the students on Furman’s campus. We are aware that we do not have the loudest voice, and we understand that we are not going to do a perfect job. However, we still speak. We still listen. Therefore, when every SGA sponsored organization has their budget cut by 20 percent, we become responsible for attempting to explain what happened and why this is a cause for concern.
Before you continue any further, please read the facts in “Funding Slashed, Groups Forced to Analyze Situation” (Page 1). In the article you will find a briefing of SGA’s budget “adjustments.”
We all understand that mistakes happen, even with SGA–a selection of some of the brightest and hardest working students on campus. Check out any issue of The Paladin, and you are guaranteed to find a handful of mistakes small and large; we are well acquainted with them. No, we are not worried about mistakes; what we are worried about is the lack of communication between our student government and student body.
This division is mostly a result of apathy. To put it frankly, most students simply do not care that much about SGA. But SGA still holds an integral role on campus. Their decisions can have a profound effect on student life, especially when every SGA funded organization has their budget cut by 20 percent. In other words, this cut is a big deal. This decision affects all Furman students directly, whether they know it or not.
This lack of awareness is where SGA has let us down. Cutting funding for future projects without informing the student body reveals an underlying problem of miscommunication.
This money is not just for FUSAB’s famous Homecoming events or even FUOC’s great outdoor adventures. This is money that had been promised to organizations such as Mock Trial, who are purchasing flights to represent our school across the nation. Money promised to academic clubs that are bringing in speakers for CLP’s. And money philanthropy groups use to raise awareness for causes. This money had a purpose for Furman’s campus, and now 20 percent of it is gone.
Despite this drastic cut, adjustments have been made by many clubs and organizations across campus. We will all survive. We just want to know what happened. We want to know why students are promised to be notified on SGA’s decisions, but yet we are feeling left in the dark. So we ask SGA to please tell us. Perhaps submit a statement to your school paper telling us what just happened.
Later this year, when dozens of election videos of questionable quality are posted onto OrgSync (or is it Moodle?), give us a reason to care about who is running for office. Communicate with your student body. We may act mildly apathetic, but we do care about the decisions you make. It is your responsibility to communicate these decisions with the students you govern.