It’s not often that students get to voice their opinions directly to the people in charge of running the university.
But once per semester, at a Student Government Association (SGA) event called the President’s Roundtable, nearly the entire administration will gather under one roof to address students’ concerns.
“I think sometimes information doesn’t get to the president level and I find it very valuable to meet with the students. I don’t always agree with students, but I want to hear [their] perspective,” said Dr. Steven Tallant, President of Texas A&M University-Kingsville. “I cannot count the number of times something has been brought up and we thought, ‘We need to fix that.’”
Through student surveys handed out throughout the semester, dean’s forums, word of mouth, and even TAMUK Confessions, SGA Academic Chair Gregory Lujano decides what will be discussed at the President’s Roundtable.
Five issues were brought to the attention of the administration this semester, including whether renovations would be done to the
business building, roadwork and potholes, Internet connectivity, the availability of food menus and the availability of grades online.
Ralph Stevens, Associate Vice President for Support Services, addressed the first issue. The way renovations are determined is through a ranking system, which is not competitive, he said. The College of Business is 19th on the list because the funds needed to renovate it (approx. $4.2 million) are not there.
“The number one renovation priority is the music building to keep our accreditation,” Tallant said. “Another problem is we’re also running out of class space, so we’re looking to get another building for classes.”
Potholes, Stevens acknowledged, are always an issue in this climate. Stevens said 147 potholes currently obstruct
roads around campus. But a construction crew is hard at work patching them up, as well as working to extend Seale St. and Ave. B.