VPSA Eddie Howard dismisses SGA general body before Monday meeting, future of SGA unclear

March 22, 2021

Today’s SGA meeting was dismissed without a meeting being called to order. The Northerner was not allowed in the room during the meeting. 

The Northerner reached out to President Lauren Goodwin via email to ask why The Northerner wasn’t allowed into the meeting and why the meeting ended early through Zoom.

“Dr. Howard wanted to speak before we called the meeting to order and asked that just the body be present. He wound up dismissing everyone before we ever even called in,” Goodwin replied. 

The Northerner then asked Goodwin what the next steps are for SGA and if this dismissal would be permanent or only for today. Goodwin has not responded at the time of publication. 

The Northerner also reached out to Dr. Eddie Howard via email about today’s events, in which he said that the meeting never really started and that “SGA is in transition” and he will reach out to The Northerner once there is a solution. 

Chairwoman Karla Arango reached out to The Northerner via Instagram and spoke about what happened during today’s meeting. 

Arango said Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Eddie Howard spoke to SGA members about the purpose of SGA. 

“[Howard] told us something along the lines of our purpose was to serve the state and ensure we as students follow the rules. He had Arnie [Slaughter] read the purpose of SGA out loud. After that he proceeded to say that it would be up to him to allow us to continue to meet. He said if we were not interested in moving forward then we could resign. After that, he asked everyone if they wanted to move forward. No one on zoom said anything. Then he asked the people in the room and only TJ, Chris, Luke (pretty much all of the judicial council) with an exception of Carlos because he wasn’t there. The rest of us said nothing. Then, he asked us personally if he wanted to move forward and addressed us as a group. Then, we just sat there are [sic] stared at him,” Arango said. 

Arango said that Howard told Slaughter and Interim Senior Director of Student Engagement Sarah Aikman that he was “pulling the plug” on SGA. 

Howard asked the executive board to stay in the meeting while the rest of SGA members left, according to Arango. 

Arango said that Goodwin gave no response during today’s meeting. 

The Northerner asked Arango why she didn’t speak at the meeting. 

“I didn’t speak because Eddie said we were done and turned off the mic immediately after pulling the plug,” she said. 

Arango said she believes that nothing will occur until the next SGA administration takes over and that nothing will change throughout SGA until conversations are had. 

“I would say that there will never be any change regarding of the administration until we sit down to have the conversation about how the system that makes SGA is corrupt in itself. Every year new students come and the old ones go, yet nothing ever gets accomplished and that’s because people are afraid to change. Until someone is willing to take a step back and question why SGA continues to go in circles, no real change will occur,” Arango said.

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VPSA Eddie Howard dismisses SGA general body before Monday meeting, future of SGA unclear