Second term gives president chance to improve

The news of junior business and communication major Erik Pederson’s re-election as SGA’s 2013-14 president has made its way into conversations throughout campus. Whether through a side comment made when walking over the chalky remnants of his and the other candidate’s last minute campaign propaganda attempts or witnessing the plethora of congratulatory facebook statuses about his win, one things is for sure, Pederson’s victory has made itself present.

But one thing that is not 100 percent present is the change that will accompany this win.

While a decent number of resolutions have been passed thus far in the school year, the overall focus and outcomes from these “recommendations” have not necessarily seemed to be as student oriented or implemented as efficiently as in previous years.

For example, resolutions passed last semester involving improvements of faculty and staff printing methods and the branding of NKU’s campus seem to have been a little unfocused and off base with students’ actual goals.

This being said, strides made with initiatives such as the now up-and-running online syllabus bank have not gone unnoticed. Students across campus have been using the bank, which stemmed from an SGA resolution, to register for next semester’s classes. Pederson himself said, “I am very excited to show this to students and have even gotten responses from students who are talking about it and are curious about it.”

With goals for the upcoming year such as easing the transition for the new VP of Student Affairs and the new VP of Academic Affairs falling toward the top of his list; however, it’s hard to determine if Pederson will “keep students first” as several of the candidates he beat out for his presidential position had promised, or if pushing initiatives for faculty or administrative recognition will take priority.

Additionally, one must also consider the goals from last year’s elections, which Pederson said he would carry out this year, that have not been effectively achieved. These include making upper-division housing a reality, improving the student’s voice in Frankfort and, of course, improving the infamous NKU wireless and bandwidth. We see how that has gone.

But there is some good news.

As it pertains to this point in the school year, SGA is making a lot of the right kind of progress.  Both Pederson and the rest of SGA seem to really be focused on student-based initiatives. Various changes to the student meal experience have just been passed, to be implemented this fall, thanks to a recent SGA resolution. Additionally, SGA  just held their first town hall meeting, which also stems from a recent resolution, in order to better hear student voices and implement the ideas they hear.

A major point in the recent election dealt with the creation of a diversity and/or LGBTQ center on campus in order to better represent that student population. With a resolution just being passed last week supporting such a LGBTQ center, it seems like SGA has finally hit their progressive stride.

Let’s just hope student-focused goals like this don’t fall to the wayside.

When looking forward to the year ahead, it is evident that Pederson has endless opportunities. We at The Northerner are not critical and do not point out flaws without reason. As a student-based news organization it is simply our job to ensure that the voice of our audience is being heard. If Pederson does as he says he will, things will be fine.  If not, it is our duty to call him out and represent the student voice.

We do this not to make bitter any relationships between SGA and The Northerner, but to ensure that the person who won over the students’ vote is carrying out the goals he promised when asking the students to bestow upon him this incredibly important position in the first place.