The President’s Report: Sept. 28, 2016

Zack Thomas, Student Body President

Hello, my fellow OU students!

Thank you for joining me for this September edition of the President’s Report.

Since the last time, a couple of important points have come up for your Oakland University Student Congress to review.

Anders, your vice president, and I met with President Hynd and V.P. McIntosh again on Sept. 22. We discussed project updates, a thank you for the transparency regarding this year’s Winter College trip, and the future of parking on campus.

To provide a quick update, it seems we are at near-full capacity with regard to parking at several points during the day, and in order to facilitate parking change, there are a couple of possibilities: 1) maintain the current system with parking at full capacity, 2) add in premier parking lots which students, faculty, and administrators would have to pay for if parking in those lots, or 3) incorporate permit parking into tuition costs, and a couple of other nuanced approaches similar to 1, 2, and 3.

Anders, our administration and I will always fight for the most convenient options for students. Administration seems to be wanting to go the route of Option No. 3 to manage parking congestion since we last spoke, while we are in favor of No. 1 and/or No. 2.

We are still discussing specifics with administrators, and we are coming out with a collaborative survey soon to obtain student input to determine the best solution, so we can speak to the president and vice president about making those solutions a reality. We will definitely continue to keep you updated as soon as we obtain more information!

As for other projects, your OU Student Congress has currently registered over 300 people to vote in this upcoming November general election using both paper mail-in forms and our free online portal, TurboVote, at oakland.turbovote.org.

These numbers are fantastic, and definitely trump last year’s numbers, but we still have several weeks to go before the close-of-registration deadline on Oct. 11, and several big pushes yet to make to increase our numbers: we will be tabling in the OC, will send registrations under each door in Housing, and will have mobile Secretary of State on Oct. 3 outside of South Foundation! We will continue to collect voter registrations at the OUSC office in the basement of the OC until Oct. 6!

Additionally, I have currently taken an interest in reforming certain aspects of the OU website and MySAIL page, more specifically related to 1) the site opening up new tabs each time one searches through the site or clicks on a link, and 2) that students (I remember this from working in Orientation) are often frustrated with the registration system because in order to get all of the information they need, students are likely to have to have three tabs open to show i) add/drop screen, ii) class times, and iii) visual of class schedule.

I met with faculty and administration from the School of Engineering and Computer Science and Orientation and New Student Programs, and they agree with me that some of these are worth looking into fixing. The awesome thing about having different offices in support is that it exponentially amplifies our chances of making quick fixes like this to improve the Oakland experience for everyone!

As always, as YOUR Student Body President, I seek to represent the needs and concerns of my fellow students. Any student suggestions, concerns, or ideas regarding any of these ideas, or more, can be emailed to [email protected], or relayed to us at OUSC meetings! We meet regularly in the Oakland Room of the Oakland Center at 4 p.m. on Mondays.

Sincerely,

Zack