Wednesday’s assembly saw the chartering of the Student Veterans Association and a presentation by Jeff Fowler concerning university communication issues, among other business.
SGA voted unanimously to charter SLU’s Student Veterans Association, a student group founded two years ago with the mission to promote integration of veterans into college life. Mark Tabor and Eric Sage, the group’s president and vice president, respectively, gave a brief presentation to the chambers.
“Speaking as a veteran of the Iraq war, it was [difficult] for me to come home and be a civilian again,” Tabor said. “There isn’t any club here that facilitates this transition.”
SVA currently has 17 active members and is working to develop a larger presence in the St. Louis community. The group intends to host a food drive this semester, in addition to developing a series of micro-events for Veterans Week and creating a post-traumatic stress disorder initial response system in order to better assist veterans in need.
There was also a presentation given by Vice President of University Advancement Jeff Fowler focusing on the University Communication Task Force, a coalition formed last May with the goals of assessing and addressing university-wide communication issues. SLU’s administration faced repeated criticism last academic year concerning a lack of transparency, opportunity for discussion and feedback concerning important university decisions.
“We know very honestly that we had a number of issues last year, communication being one of them,” Fowler said. “It needed to be addressed so that communication was better both upward and downward throughout the university.”
One result of the task force’s work is the communication feedback tool, a feature on SLU’s website which allows any member of the university community to submit feedback to the University administration. According to Fowler every submission will receive a direct response within five business days.
Fowler also pointed to the open fora and university input during presidential search process as positive indications of improved communication university-wide.
Fowler stated that the task force is still working to develop more effective channels for discussion throughout the university.