It is no longer a surprise that despite of the existing university policy, some student councils still use enrolment to force students to take part in the student council undertakings. Unfortunately, student council fees and fines have been used by various colleges in the university to hamper enrolment of students. In the case of College of Business Administration, most of their students are exposed to this malpractice. Yet out of the hundreds of students, one frustrated student dared to publicize a statement in protest of the situation. This caused an uproar in social media.
Despite the fuzz, the university administration is unaware of what is happening. Hence, the issue remains in the battleground and what the administration did was to only throw theoretical rather than empirical solutions.
After the administration pointed out that council fees should not hamper enrolment, it failed to ensure enforcement of the policy and left the students to suffer the consequences of non-enforcement. Indeed, it is not only unjust but also illegal that enrolment is denied due to unsettled council fees. After all, enrolment is an academic affair and should be independent of outside factors such as the student’s duty as a council member.
Moreover, not all Sillimanians are financially capable of paying council fees. There are also other reasonable factors why some students fail to contribute time, money, or effort for the activities. The student council officers have the obligation to unite the body in an agreement including the set of activities they will have. But how can these officers ensure students to comply with the agreement when they have no hold over them? The administration gave one solution: Be creative. How?
While intramurals is fast approaching, officers have to juggle the act of preparing for their set of activities and at the same time execute creative ways to encourage students to pay to support the athletes. The officers are caught in between forcing the students to pay or nothing at all. The complex situation leaves us with more pressing questions. How will we balance the interests of students in collecting student council fees? Do we need to look back and reevaluate our priorities as a university? Maybe the administration needs to literally get off their chairs and make sure that the colleges respect and follow the policy.