Investigates various questions and concerns that come to the attention of the student senate.


Monique Geronimo (chair)
Rida Ali
Jonah Schmitz
Mac Bendickson
Mikkel Undlin

Goals


We will examine the relationship between SGA, students, and administration with regards to accessibility and transparency

We will evaluate the student perception of SGA initiatives, programming, impact, and leadership.

We will improve the observed relationships and perception of SGA with the rest of St. Olaf by means of Focus Groups, Surveys, and Analysis, culminating in a presentation to Senate and reformation before the end of the academic year.

Progress

Investigating the student body and faculty’s perception of SGA with regards to fairness, accessibility, and transparency, we initially organized and conducted focus groups in order to receive feedback from the community. Those chosen for participation in the Focus Groups were selected in the interest of diversity among a multitude of factors, including age, major, and current involvement with SGA. While we did come to understand some students’ thoughts, this method was ultimately deemed ineffective due to the lack of interest in participation. Reflecting on our efforts in the Fall, we decided a wider, more flexible approach would be more efficient. An online survey was created and sent to the student body to gather feedback. While this method was not as discussion-based and personal as we would have liked, we were able to collect many more thoughts and opinions on SGA.

Generally speaking, there is a significant lack of knowledge among the student body with regard to the role of Student Government. One notable observation is that a significant percentage of the student body does not feel like they are being adequately represented. Many students also feel that information pertaining to SGA is inaccessible and these students do not know how to contribute to SGA. There is reason to believe that these factors are directly linked. Based on these results it would be advisable to engage in continued outreach campaigns as well as efforts to make SGA information more accessible. On a more positive note, students generally do not see there being significant barriers to entry or stereotypes associated with SGA. Additionally, many believe that SGA cares about their thoughts and ideas. Figures from our survey analysis are shown below.

Criteria:Results:
Have not held a position in SGA:89.23%
Know what Senate is:77.32%
Average level of interest in SGA:2.58496732
Average level of connection to SGA:2.032679739
Do not know how to contribute to SGA:65.91%
Believe there are stereotypes/barriers to being involved:22.35%
Believe there are stereotypes/barriers for elected positions:27.41%
Know where to access info about SGA:38.99%
Believe that SGA is representative of campus:53.51%
Feels like SGA cares about their thoughts/ideas:76.51%
Feel like there is a senator representing them:57.10%
Believe that there are branches that are over/under funded:21.70%
How good of a job is SGA doing?:3.373970346