A variety of students were asked if they felt their views and opinions were heard on the Lawrence campus by faculty and administration, and whether or not they thought this actually mattered. When surveyed, most students definitely felt their opinions were important and deserved being heard, but questioned if they really were.
“I think that some people’s voices are heard, yeah, and it does matter to me,” said junior Emily Wendorff. Sophomore Emma Walter felt similarly, stating “Yeah, I think it is [important].”
Junior Gus Murphy agreed, but believed that students “don’t have too much of say, mostly I think it’s the people that are giving money.” Senior Ben Phillips thought the issue of student voices was more nuanced: “I think it’s different within the jazz department. I think it’s different for us because we know [the faculty and staff] so well, but in the administration of the entire school, no, I feel like I’m not heard.”
How this actually plays out in student’s everyday lives is not as clear cut. “I think, like most people, I think about it when decisions are made that affect me, and I see those decisions affecting people in my in-group,” stated Wendorff when asked how much she thought about the voice of the student body.
Walter was similarly unsure, stating “I feel like I don’t have a good sense of that. I mean, has anything been done that happened because people spoke out against it in the past year? I just feel like I don’t have a good sense of what’s happening. I mean, I know that LUCC exists, but overall I don’t know.”
So while there was little dissent among students over the volume of the voice of the student body, it remains unclear how students actually feel about this fact and whether or not they want to have a larger say.
While it’s a tricky topic with no clear resolution, the voice of the student body is worth considering as it directly affects us as current university students. It’s up to each student to decide how they feel about their opinions and how they affect Lawrence.