New policy disallows flexibility for small CSO events

Throngs of students would likely flock to the Busch Student Center’s Wool Ballrooms if Malcolm Gladwell were to comply to a last minute talk while promoting his latest book.

Chaifetz Arena would be packed if Lance Armstrong were to schedule a short appearance at Saint Louis University after speaking at another venue. Situations like these occur more frequently than one would predict. As a result, many events are booked in such a fashion.

More precisely, other institutions are those that schedule events in an approach of such happenstance and flexibility.

Due to a combination of work by Department of Student Life and Student Government Association (though mainly the former), SLU’s student body can anticipate a decrease in politicians, academics and media personas that grace our campus.

Plain and simple, SLU students – as well as organizations – are hurt by a very recent policy change. If not for a member of SGA, a participant in a Chartered Student Organization (CSO) or a student with his/her ear to the ground for the procedural campus rumblings, the policy itself would not attract much attention or be of much interest.

SGA amended the requisite number of days necessary to seek approval for events – such as speakers – and increased the amount of formal paperwork, as well. Prior to the change, the administration required five business days to authorize hosting any event. Now, 20 business days are required. After receiving confirmation of the event five business days after booking a room, CSOs now have to suffer through a near month-long wait before they can actually host it.

If an entire month is needed to authorize an event, SLU students can say goodbye to the prospect of impromptu visits from individuals of interest as their schedules open unexpectedly.

Opportunities are not all that will be lost, however. By bringing fewer speakers and hosting fewer events, the possibility for smaller CSOs to grow and increase involvement from students may present itself. Therefore,  a less impressive request for funding is then generated at the close of the year, and the likelihood diminishes for the organization’s survival in subsequent semesters.

SLU is an institution of higher learning that prizes augmenting its students’ awareness of dynamics in their surrounding environments.

Why, then, make providing supplementary educational activities, like listening to presentations from scholars, more difficult?

All aspects of our campus, whether administrative or student-run, must work in tandem to put the interests of the student body first.

The jump from 5 business days to 20 may appear marginal, but the effect will certainly be felt when we begin to wonder why authors and dignitaries are speaking at every school but ours.

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