There is a problem on campus in terms of student involvement and creating effective change. So what is this problem? What is the curse that’s plaguing our campus? Is it lethal? Is it dangerous?
Apathy plagues this campus every day and grinds the gears of change to a halt. Two weeks ago, I wrote about an issue I had with the Activities Programming Board (APB) and the student activity fee. And while APB took it to heart, and some students talked to me about it – expressing both criticism and praise – the issue seemed to be dead in the water with students after about three days.
It seems like a lot of students are struck with a type of paralysis that prevents them from achieving any sort of substantial change.
I have to admit, there is a small group of dedicated students on campus. These are ones who stay up late at night worrying about the future of their organization and commit themselves to promoting their group day after day.
In regards to the APB column from two weeks ago, two such students (APB President Nicole McAllister and SGA President Luke King) contacted me because they wanted to open discussion on the topic – a trait I find admirable.
Each side discussed and explained its stance on the piece, and that proved to be beneficial in reaching an understanding. The issue was on the table, and people were talking about it. This is how change happens.
We need students with the tenacity of Don Quixote. We need students who will charge at windmills even though everyone else tells them that it’s pointless. We need students who could care less about how this is affecting their resume, and look more at the bigger picture. While I specifically mention both Nicole and Luke, there are plenty more on campus.
But these trends of apathy continue to permeate our campus, despite the best efforts of certain students. For example, look at the issue of the crosswalk on Eighth Street. Talks have been conducted with the City of Erie officials, who were adverse to the idea, and the issue remains static.
I’m not blaming students or anyone in particular. It’s not your fault. We only have four years, and there’s a lot to do – academics, sports, extracurricular activities, etc. SGA has a plethora of things to worry about, and it’s easy for me to sit on my ivory throne of journalism and throw stones.
So all I’m saying is this – participate. Don’t say, “I can’t do it just because it’s never been done.” Don’t entrench yourself in the routine of your life. Don’t avoid confrontation because it’s uncomfortable.
Get motivated. Get angry. Stand up for something that’s going to fail. Confrontation isn’t your enemy, it’s your friend. Only through the active participation of the students can the administration truly recognize what we need. Only then can Gannon University become the place we deserve.