Type to search

News Relays Edition

Student Senate skullduggery: budget cuts and who-knows-what

Student Senate/Publications Flowchart Graphic by Liv Klassen | Photo Editor

Though the 36th session of Student Senate has been aware of the financial state of student publications since at least February, no action on the issue or defense for the School of Journalism and Mass Communication as a whole has been implemented. 

At the meeting on April 13, Student Senate went over the expectations of SJMC Senator Gannon Henry and called an immediate vote on the issue of raising the Student Activities Fee instead of tabling it for a week. The motion sadly did not pass. 

Raising the Student Activities Fee would have gone to supporting the rising costs associated with student media and publications and continuing to compensate writers.  

The issue was thought to be heard the following week, according to the Senate schedule, but was changed in their LinkTree without informing anyone. Members of student publications had no time to communicate with or gather their supporters.   

In an act of defiance and genuine rage, supporters of student publications, who rushed to gather there, walked out of the meeting as the decision to table the issue for the next meeting was dismissed, and it was clear that the motion would be rejected.

Over the past few weeks, members of the student publications, people who make up the student body for which the Student Senate represents, have shown up to their meetings to advocate for action and bring attention to the dire straits that the publications are in. Still, nothing was done. 

As the Student Senate Beat Writer for The Times-Delphic, I have seen other student organizations come to the Student Senate floor every week to request funding for whatever activity or trip they have organized for themselves and their fellow members. Not once has an organization been denied a funding request. Sometimes corners are cut, or they are asked to ask for additional assistance from another campus center, but they are always granted at least a portion of what they initially requested. 

However, as student publications have cited their struggles over and over again, the support that has been given to other organizations has not been granted to the publications. Student Body President Conner Oeztmann has met with the Board of Student Communications on what can be done, yet nothing has come of it.  

The 36th session of Student Senate has displayed that they are unwilling to go the extra mile on something that undeniably affects Drake’s campus. They are only willing to play nice and pursue a business-as-usual countenance. They have no teeth. They claim that their duty is to support the entire student body, but have they forgotten that student publications are also a part of that whole?  

Because, in the end, these student publications are award-winning and student-run. You cannot publicize and praise student publications for your school advertisements and then turn around and actively discredit the service we provide.  

We can only hope that this issue will be made a top priority in the next senate session – however, the support just doesn’t seem to be present.


You Might also Like

Skip to content