On April 6, the current Student Government Association executives led their last weekly meeting as president, vice president, secretary and treasurer. Next week, the newly elected executive officers will take over.
SGA began their meeting by discussing an issue brought to SGA’s attention by students regarding the Slingshot textbook system. Students claim the system is overcharging for their textbooks when they can be found cheaper elsewhere. Also, many students do not have the time to find cheaper textbooks because professors are not opening courses until the week or day before classes begin.
Current SGA president Kiva Maxwell opened the floor to the senate to openly discuss price comparison of textbooks as well as the timing issue. The University is asking the senate to advise the situation and come up with a temporary or more permanent solution.
The most common issues with the textbook system are the timing of when books needed were announced and awareness of how Slingshot works. In senate discussion, members suggested students being given their syllabi two weeks or more before classes began in order to have the time to make accurate price comparisons. This would allow students to save money and determine if they will need the textbooks for the class or not.
Members of the senate felt like students are only paying for convenience with the bookstore and Slingshot textbook system. This means students will pay for the normal textbook price along with extra fees from Slingshot.
They also discussed the issue with how students are informed about the Slingshot system, saying it feels as though they have to figure it out on their own. This includes necessary materials, the renting process and return policy.
The senate also said returning textbooks is an inconvenience as returns only give 10% of the original payment back to the student’s account. There is not much to be done on the school’s part since the bookstore is a separate entity compared to the rest of campus.
The senate proposed professors send their syllabi a minimum of 14 days in advance for students to have better preparation in finding and buying their textbooks before the semester begins.
After the senate advisory discussion, they moved to the current executive officers’ farewell speeches. Maxwell said she wanted to leave SGA better than she found it, which she said was accomplished and improved on with the next group of executive officers.
They then discussed final events for the semester including class officer elections. Class officers will campaign April 8-13 and elections will be April 14-15.
Activities to look for as finals approach include the annual Easter egg hunt, various sporting events and the finals week retreat.
Contact SGA for any questions, comments or concerns.