App State’s SGA releases first midterm report

Andrew Rice, Reporter

SGA released its first midterm report highlighting its accomplishments throughout the past semester and goals for the upcoming semester. 

Student body President Bailey Gardin and Vice President DJ Evans lead the administration. According to the report, the goals of their administration have been to implement “pillars of accountability, equity, wellness and engagement.” 

“There’s been a lot of talk on campus that people don’t really know what SGA does,” Gardin said. “So, I think it’s very important to put a focus on external work and communication, so we felt a midterm report would be a great example of one way to do that.”

According to the report, in an effort to increase accountability, the administration worked alongside ClimACT to organize a protest at the board of trustees meeting earlier last semester. Director of Sustainable Development, Isabella King, worked on organizing the protest between SGA and ClimACT. 

“As a member of both ClimACT and SGA, a large amount of the organization’s effort fell to me,” King said. “It was important to do, though, and I am glad our effort is being acknowledged.”

King has also worked with the counseling center to increase access to mental health resources that have become a pressing need for the student body amid the climate crisis, according to the report. 

“The best resource to offer students is in the community. Finding a community to share struggles and worries with amidst a threatening climate crisis is absolutely essential,” King said.

Treasurer Ariela Allen is also working to provide resources and support to students. Allen has sought out ways to address financial matters and educate students on the university’s budgeting and spending processes.

According to the report, in the past semester, Allen is working on a financial literacy powerpoint addressing the budgeting and spending of the university. The powerpoint will be released after spring break at the latest.

Allen said many students are unaware of where their money goes in relation to the university’s overall financial plan. 

“Students always ask about using money from the football program to pay university expenses,” Allen said. “This powerpoint will help educate students on where the university budgets things like tuition money compared to government money”

Allen has also implemented a funding request form through SGA. They said they hope implementing the form will aid the university’s clubs and advocacy groups in getting funds for projects.

“SGA cannot purchase anything,” Allen said. “So this system provides a much faster way to look through purchasing requests for materials and resources that we may need.”

While reflecting on the past semester, Gardin said he believes the engagement pillar saw the most success. 

“Whether it’s hosting town hall events, addressing the university, getting out on Sanford Mall, these events allow our constituents the opportunity to come together and voice their concerns about the university’s direction and operations,” Gardin said.

With their accomplishments in mind, the Gardin/Evans administration is hoping the student body sees the midterm report and is reminded that SGA is a resource they can use to increase overall student wellbeing.

“There are people that are working extremely hard, there is room for collaboration and we can hold our university leadership accountable,” Gardin said.