University needs to listen closely to students’ concerns, make changes

Editor’s Note: This letter is in response to the article published in Tuesday’s edition: “Students and staff share thoughts on campus improvements.”


Dear Editor:

I  really like that attention is being brought to the student body about some of these issues because, to be quite frank, it seems if there are quite a bit of major choices being made by the school that impact us, but our opinions are not even taken into question.

I agree with a lot of the student testimonials on the cover because I do wonder where my money is going — to only look at my bursar and be like, “Why am I paying for things that I do not use?”

No, I don’t agree that the highest paid person on campus is the coach. I personally didn’t come to SIU for sports. We can see that with the amount of winning banners we have/don’t have. I came for school.

The university goes on and on about money it doesn’t have or is promised, but there seems to be quite a few ways we could save money that are just frankly common sense.

Take the buildings for example: Some places on campus it’s 85 degrees in a room, and in others it’s 40 degrees. We run the heat way into the spring when it’s 75 outside. It’s not cold enough outside for our rooms to be boiling, and the hotter it is inside, the quicker I’m going to want to be outside.

Another issue is with some of the grounds and maintenance people. I see idling vehicles everywhere or teams of two or more coming to do a less-than-30-minute job and then quitting for lunch, so then it’s taking an entire afternoon.

The last issue is parking. This has to be the worst school for parking of any sort, and the influx of extra parking needed after the parking garage closure is terrible.

We have grass lots that are rarely ever used (and I know I’m going to strike a nerve), but why not make these into parking lots? Turning the grass lots into parking lots would save the university fuel in the long run for their seemingly endless lawnmowing.

The space is there. It would require little construction and we could actually have space for people that bought the stickers. Or (the university) could at least open up lots for only the requirement of the staff of each building, then allow the remaining spaces to be taken by the students that need them.

The best way we could save money is, in my opinion, cutting the parking division’s parking cops. It would save a lot of anger, but oh well, the university needs our money any way it can. Why not ticket you for attending class and having to park on campus when all of the spots allocated for you are taken?

I wish I had realized all of this before I come here because I weigh my options each semester about if I should stay or not. With so much wrong with SIU’s buildings, parking and student morale, I wish that the higher-ups would take student opinions into account more, rather than just act and assume the students will comply because we have to. We don’t really have much of a choice.


Ross Smith

junior from Perry studying criminal justice 

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