I’m enough of a realist to acknowledge this University is not and never will be small enough to allow each of us the opportunity to express our own input in front of the Board of Trustees or members of the administration.
That’s why initiatives like this year’s “Your View. Your IU.” Student Experience at the Research University survey are so important.
The email invitation to take this year’s survey went to all IU Bloomington undergraduates. The survey is used at large research universities around the country and is designed to allow them to compare themselves to each other.
The SERU survey is one of two large-scale national student experience survey efforts used by IU’s Office of the Vice Provost of Undergraduate Education and the only one administered to all students at the University simultaneously.
In the past, surveys like this have influenced areas of University decision-making from student orientation and First Year Experience programs, to advising services and even new faculty workshop orientations.
For multiple semesters this page of the Indiana Daily Student has had no shortage of columns lamenting a lack of student input in University administration. We usually lay the fault for that conspicuous absence at the feet of administrators like Provost Lauren Robel or student government figures like IU Student Association President Jose Mitjavila or his predecessors.
Pieces with my picture appearing alongside have not been least among them.
Student participation in committees at this University is more of an afterthought — even potentially a façade — than a priority.
Your student government is more concerned with developing a casual dining option in the IMU and taking credit for the enacted policies of tickets they ran against than actually placing student advocates in these positions and ensuring they are empowered in a timely manner.
Unfortunately, as much as IUSA may be ineffective and unresponsive or the administration and Board of Trustees structurally indisposed to student issues, they don’t, between them, exhaust the shares of blame.
No, there’s another culprit — you and I. Apathy among the student population is certainly among the principle reasons we have the problems we do.
Now you have a chance to participate meaningfully and, most importantly, easily in the process that governs this University. This isn’t voting for a student government that proceeds to ignore you for the next year or taking a seat on a committee that is intimidating and confusing.
It’s barely even a time commitment. I took it during lunch.
This is a direct line to the top, straight from your computer screen to the desks of the real movers and shakers at this University — and if you still need a little convincing, you might even win prizes like an Amazon gift card.
So pull up your computer, find your link to the Student Experience at the Research University survey and take it. Maybe it’s not the loudest, most effective way to make our individual voices heard — I never said it was perfect — but at least it’s something.
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