After student backlash occurred regarding Public Safety's crack-down of parties held at the Fairway Apartments, the Student Government Association held an open dialogue event where on-campus living seniors were able to participate in a discussion with the Vice President of Student Affairs Kevin Abel. The event was held at the Barter Student Center on Feb. 3, and dealt with a variety of topics in regards to what both parties wanted the end of the year to look like as graduation celebrations and traditions begin to commence.
“The main goal was to try to get on the same page with Public Safety, Residence Life, the Center of Student Involvement and the students over how we want to see the end of the year play out. The types of things we want to see, what we don’t want to see and to address the frustrations that happened at the end of last year”, said SGA president, Dylan Mire.
Senior, SarahBeth Hyde, experienced some of those frustrations during the 2018 Couch Burning Party. This party has traditionally been carried out by seniors and involves setting fire to personally owned couches right before seniors move out. Public Safety has recently cracked down on this party due to the many hazards and safety concerns that come with alcohol consumption and fire.
“To me, the apartments feel a lot like home,” Hyde said. “Last year I did not feel that homie environment, especially when police are knocking on your door, and putting your best friends in handcuffs. Working towards a solution for that is one of my top priorities, and to make sure that everyone has the safest and best experience.”
Many different stories and observations were shared by seniors about their time living at the Fairways, and solutions were drafted to be further discussed and put into action by the Student Government Association.
“We talked about doing things like to have food outside the apartments, having public safety out there but not in an overwhelming or aggressive way and possibly having some sort of entertainment there so students have something to do,” said Mire. “I really wanted to get other students’ perspectives and see what they wanted to see, so I could take that perspective and marry it with the perspective of the school, and hopefully create a really fun and great environment for the end of the year to celebrate our four years on the hill.”
SGA plans to host more open discussion events that encourage dialogue between students and staff, so together everyone can work together to build a campus that is both safe and fun for everyone.