USG introduces proposal for student trustee vote

By Marissa Novel

Students from SIU and SIU-Edwardsville each have one student trustee to represent them, they are elected by the students on the two campuses.

Under current law, the governor chooses one of the trustees to have a vote on the SIU Board of Trustees, but this would change if a proposal put forward by USG Tuesday evening moves forward.

The Undergraduate Student Government passed a resolution urging legislation resulting in the Student Trustee’s vote on the Board of Trustees alternating between Edwardsville and Carbondale campuses yearly.


President Cameron Shulak said after consulting with Southern Illinois University- Edwardsville’s student trustee, Mitch Morecraft, the proposal is in response to inappropriate political pressure on student trustees.

“We want to call on the university’s and the state’s legislatures to figure something out and make this so it’s not a political game as to how this gets decided,” he said.

Shulak said two student trustees are present at the SIU Board of Trustee meetings but one, whom is chosen by the governor, is allowed a vote. He said the governor has not chosen either trustee for the student vote yet this year.

“The governor should appoint the more worthy … or the more qualified, better representative of the student body,” he said. “Now, that’s not what happens. The governor picks who he likes more and who is going to vote more his way on things.”

Shulak said both trustees do not currently vote because there are six members on the board, not counting the student trustee, and an even number could result in ties.

Shulak said each trustee will represent students from both campuses equally.

“I can’t think of many times the SIU and SIU-E trustees would disagree on anything,” he said. “They’re both students, they’re both representing their campuses full of students so they’re going to see things the same way 99 percent of the time.”


Shulak said the new legislation is still in its early stages.

“I’m going to make sure the administration and the board is aware of the resolution because it actually has to make it to the state legislature,” he said. “It needs to travel quite a ways before the change is actually made, but I’m obviously going to lobby it to make sure that people are aware of it.”