In Sauder room B at the dining hall, the members of Student Advisory Board (SAB) sit around the tables.
It’s a diverse group of talents, ethnicities and perspectives. There are resident assistants, ministry assistants, athletes, international students and students from all different academic disciplines. But they all have one purpose: To provide a louder voice to the students at Hesston College.
Tomorrow SAB will decide the date for the “student body meeting,” where students will get into table groups and address opinions SAB collected from a comment box placed in the Nest. There are no restrictions on the type of comments students can submit. Students can comment on everything from classes to their dorm room furniture and even offer suggestions to the student development office.
Noah Yoder, a president of SAB this year, hopes to see enthusiastic student participation at the event.
“SAB is the most direct way to make change on campus,” Yoder said. “It is the tool for students to show their voice.”
SAB provides an opportunity for students to engage in dialogue with administrators at Hesston College about issues related to campus life.
Members have already seen results. For instance, a SAB member said the students need a printer in the Nest, so they put one in last March. They also have been talking with IT about the networking on campus. Last fall the SAB brought another concern to faculty: They said it was unfair to receive attendance penalties for college visits. The academic council of faculty is now considering syllabus policies on that topic.
Students who sit on the board meet once a month with Vice President of Academics Brent Yoder, Vice President of Finance and Auxiliary Services Mark Landes and Vice President of Student Development and Athletic Director Rob Ramseyer. These VPs help lead the meeting with SAB student president Noah Yoder.
SAB was restructured this year by the administration in order to make it more visible and accessible to students. One of the decisions they made was to elect a president, Noah Yoder, and a secretary, Cristina Rapisardi. They are also nominating new members from all areas of campus in order to collect more diverse and innovating ideas.
Yoder and Ramseyer ask faculty and staff members to suggest new members. The current members of SAB also recommend new members.
SAB urges students to drop their ideas for student life in a comments box that will be placed in the Nest. Those notes will be read by Yoder and Ramseyer, then they will bring them to the board.
“This is a chance to make a difference,” Yoder said. “This is the time to stand up to make our campus lives better.”
If you have questions or comments for SAB, talk to one of the current SAB members: