Photograph courtesy of UIS SGA

Since January is the start of a new year and semester, it is only fair to acknowledge the changes and accomplishments that the Student Government Association (SGA) made on campus in 2019. Ben Paoletti, their current president, hopes to continue increasing SGA’s presence on campus. Paoletti states his goal for 2020, “…to show students that SGA has an impact on policies and events going around campus.”

In 2019, SGA held a student forum and a rally in regards to an incident involving UIS employees posting a racially charged Facebook post around Halloween. The rally showed that UIS supports diversity and wants to ensure that students feel accepted here. The forum was an event that allowed students to express their concerns about anything on campus. One concern brought up at the forum included the admission office student workers getting their hours cut and the forum allowed students to fight and get their hours back.

Another change made is the creation of a shuttle that runs from UIS to downtown Springfield. The purpose of the shuttle was to provide UIS student a safe means of transportation from UIS to the bars downtown and vice versa. Ben Paoletti regards this shuttle as one of the biggest changes he has made while being president. The shuttle ran for 10 weekends in the fall and served an average of 15 students per weekend.

Stars Supplies Shop was implemented at the Union in order to provide students with free school supplies. The shop has items such as pencils, notebooks, and so on. Any UIS student can walk up to the front desk at the Union and browse the supplies shop. Over 200 students utilized the Stars Supplies Shop. SGA also brought back Blue Crew, an organization that is dedicated to UIS spirit and student sections at athletic events. Their purpose is to promote athletic events and increase student participation. In the future, Blue Crew is hoping to have tailgates to increase student participation in events. Follow Blue Crew on Instagram @uisbluecrew for more updates.

In 2019, SGA sent five members to be a part of the UIS Campus Senate, which is a body of faculty and administration that determines academic standards and rules for UIS. Topics that were discussed include admission requirements, degree requirements and academic calendar. To learn more, visit www.uis.edu/sga.

SGA also completed projects such as re-boosting their Facebook page, UISSGA, after being inactive for two years. Their meetings started being recorded live and can be found on the Facebook page. Follow SGA on Instagram @uissga to stay up-to-date. Even with all these changes in 2019, SGA has plans to make even more improvements in the Spring 2020 semester.