After reading over all the exciting and bold ideas everyone has been putting forward, I started to think about the likelihood of AU acting on them. What are some suggestions you think that AU may or may not be interested in acting on?
In my experience, AU is normally very interested in hearing what students want and trying to work toward a solution or pathway to make that a reality. With that being said, there are times where these things don’t jive.
I think AU will be interested in hearing how they can better provide career services, mental health supports, mentorship opportunities, ways to build student community, thoughts around courses and programs, the learning environment/campus, and many others. I think for the most part AU is willing to collaborate and work toward finding ways to achieve what students want in ways that fit into the IT infrastructure and within their resources. As AU starts moving toward their new Integrated Learning Environment in the coming years, we will have ample opportunity as student council to determine what students are looking for and impart the student voice on the structure of this environment.
In my experience on council, I have seen that AU has had challenges delivering on all student asks, even if there is a commitment to it, so this should also be considered. One recent example is the request for a bookstore so students can choose between hardcopy texts and e-texts. Although this was a commitment to students, AU had to pull out of the project. While we continue to advocate for innovative approaches to this issue, this is but one example of something AU may not be willing to move on, at least in the form of a bookstore.