WSU protest draws mixed reactions from students and administrators

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Following a student protest Tuesday, students and administrators are speaking out about the exchange.

“We all stand up for our students rights!”

A phrase that about 40 students from the group ‘We the Students’ chanted on Tuesday, hoping to address a list of issues and demands.

While those crammed in the hallway were passionate about those issues, not everybody on campus shares their concerns.

“I was just kind of shocked to hear everything that was going on and seeing the list of demands that they gave just because some of them seemed so ridiculous,” says junior Samantha Stinson.

But they did get their discussion. Students demanded transparency and shared governance.

“There is not shared governance with students. There is shared governance with the faculty because they are a permanent part of the institution,” says Vice President of Strategic Communications Lou Heldman.

Heldman says not all school decisions will involve students. But he says the administration meets almost daily with students and the hallway town hall was beneficial to learn more about their concerns.

Heldman says “Usually the president meets monthly with the president of student government “

“I do not have a relationship with the administration,” says SGA President Joseph Shepard.

Shepard feels the administration does not have enough sit-down discussions, and often times he feels left in the dark.

“There have been decisions that have been made that directly impact the daily operations of students and students have not been looped into those conversations,” says Shepard.

But one student says doesn’t feel represented by either side.

“I have tried to get involved with SGA to no avail and I feel like my concerns were dismissed there and I don’t think the administration is any different,” says Turquoise Thomas. “I think with all the structures we have on campus there is a general lack of accountability and everyone is complaining but people aren’t listening to each other.”

Heldman says hearing from students is a priority. He says he plans to have more sit-down with students following spring break. Something that students on both sides agree would be beneficial.


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