What’s going on in Student Government?

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GRAPHIC BY CODY FENSKE
GRAPHIC BY CODY FENSKE

Phil Brown

Opinion Editor

While the student government doesn’t have a lot of direct control over campus operations, they still hold some sway over the rest of the school. This was evidenced recently when a student government resolution to ban tobacco from campus was acknowledged and turned into policy by the administration.

For this reason, it’s important to keep track of what the body is up to now and then. The student senate
voted on a couple resolutions this past week that will be of interest and effect to the student body in general.

In their meeting on Thursday, the senate voted on SR 15/16-001, a resolution to renew the MavSync
system with the software provider OrgSync, and SR 145/16-003, a resolution to continue to maintain
free condom dispensers on campus.

MavSync

One of the pressing issues the senate is trying to manage is MavSync. The organizational platform,
contracted to the higher-education-focused software provider OrgSync, must be renewed every three years.

Should the campus continue to use OrgSync’s software for the student and campus organization functions?

It’s easy to get uncomfortable about the university contracting out to outside agencies, especially when student data and activity is concerned. Common sense would seem to indicate that student data would be safer when kept closer to home and in one place. Plus, it would be nice to have a unified, one-stop-shop system instead of having to leapfrog from one service and software to another, one outside contractor’s vision to another’s. But overall, MavSync works well.

There don’t seem to be any major problems, although things can get clunky over time. And the design of the software fits with the school’s goals and aesthetic.

Unlike the software the university uses for intramural sports organization, IMLeagues, MavSync
isn’t plastered with annoying and intrusive ads. It’s definitely one of the better software purchases the
school has made.

The resolution recommends the contract is renewed for another three years, to the tune of $50,000.
It’s hard to find important reasons to object.

Condom Distribution

Another resolution on the table for the senate is a measure to continue the distribution of free condoms
on campus. Last August, the Student Government began providing a supply of free condoms to students on Dodge campus. As of now, that supply has run out.

Student senators are faced with the decision of whether continuing to provide the birth control or
to allow the supply to languish. On the surface, it seems like a no-brainer to allocate the $1500
the resolution calls for to provide the condoms, with the provision to support the supply as a line item in the Gender and Sexual Orientation Agency’s budget.

It’s clear that they are being put to use, or the supply wouldn’t have dwindled. The need has been established, so the case for a supply seems open-and-shut.

Students may feel that providing the protection is communicating something that they don’t want to be communicated. Perhaps they feel that helping to promote safer sex is not the responsibility of the
student government. But to those students, there’s a simple choice: accept and account for the reality of human sexuality, or ignore that reality and promote a fantasy, a fantasy that endangers their fellow students.

It would be concerning if the majority of students on campus couldn’t see the benefit of facilitating safer sex, and it is to be hoped that the student government represents them on this issue.

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