Note: Our campaign and this platform were inspired by and constructed in conjunction with conversations with 110+ students.
In order to be an effective intermediary between the administration and students, we must first understand the needs of the student body. VSG is the bridge between different sectors of campus; thus, we must build relationships with students. This will pave the way for a stronger VSG-to-student relationship and a stronger, collective student voice.
Compile resources that benefit student organizations. These would include guides of where to get co-sponsorships from on campus; how to use SkyVU; lists of past successful vendor and venue experiences.
Install video walls in Rand and Commons. This will allow student organizations, athletics teams, and administrators to showcase their events, communities, video promotions, or campaigns.
Ensure better communication with administration on changes to campus regarding FutureVU. We believe that changes to campus should not adversely affect our lives as Vanderbilt students. We will connect students directly with administrators to verify long-term changes come with representation of students.
Investigate the Greek member cap in the residential college halls. We believe limiting the number of Greek members living in residential college halls is not representative of Vanderbilt. It poses a barrier to interactions between Greek students and other spheres of campus.
We believe that VSG must be more student-facing. Over the past few years, VSG has strived to be more transparent. We must now go one step further and be more visible and active on campus.
Implement Monthly Tabling in Rand and Commons. Students can give us their ideas on their concerns and feedback on VSG during lunch hours. In return, we will offer free food items- similar to our Coffee and Conversations initiative.
Host weekly office hours. Every week, we will be at Local Java or Commons for a specified time frame to consistently interface with students.
Update and spread awareness of our web resources. We need to revamp the VSG website so that it is more accessible to student needs. This will centralize useful VSG resources, including the Vanderbilt App.
Pursue increased student representation in VSG. We must provide more clarity of the role of each VSG position and highlight the quintessential value of various student voices. This will be accomplished by reaching out to organizations across campus during application periods for appointed positions and Senate elections.
We are committed to leveling the playing field. We want to ensure that all students and organizations have equal opportunity to lay the foundation for success.
Provide pre-professional financial support to students with demonstrated financial need. We will work with and model a program after Experience Vanderbilt to sponsor graduate school applications, travel reimbursements for interviews, and preparation for pre-professional exams.
Create a Student Leadership Scholarship. We want to enable leaders to continue their work, recognize them for their achievements, and provide them with the ability to balance their lifestyle. We acknowledge that serving as a campus leader on top of holding a job and being a full-time student is financially non-inclusive. We want to set aside $10,000 of our budget to recognize students managing leadership positions and holding a paid job.
Allow umbrella organizations to appoint the AcFee Chair. Organizations including the MLC, VPAC, and Interfaith Council will collectively have a chance to review and appoint the AcFee Chair applicants. This will serve to increase the transparency of the AcFee process so student organizations can actually know what to expect from each chair and co-chair.
Create a task force of students to respond to and to help students in response to national issues. This will be set up similar to our newly created natural disaster task force. In times where communities are attacked, VSG must help advocate for and support all students.
cultivate student well-being
What we all often forget is that everyone at this university is first and foremost a student. We will work to promote a greater student mental, academic, and physical well-being.
Establish a strong first-year and transfer student peer advising system before classes start. A peer mentor with a similar post-graduation interest will contact matriculated students before class registration and give them advice on their courses. We will work with existing on campus support systems to centralize and strengthen existing efforts to aid incoming students.
Provide more support for RA’s and VUceptor’s. We will work with the new Director of the Undergraduate Care Center (UCC) to ensure a mental health program is created specific to all of the issues and stresses tailored to the needs of RA’s and VUceptor’s.
Invite Center for Student Wellbeing (CSW) Coaches to visit classes to present about the CSW. They will give a brief presentation amount mental health and the functions of CSW along with a breathing/meditation practice right before the first midterm week of the academic year, one of the most stressful periods for first-years.
Adapt successful mental health campaigns held by different organizations on campus to be used in all communities on campus. VSG should project its resources so that leaders can learn about mental health and how to successfully support their communities. Broad mental health campaigns are not successful, but helping each community set up its own campaign may prove fruitful in changing our campus culture. Our plan-->
Involve students in the updating of the sexual misconduct policy each year. Administration revises this each year, but we believe that students must have a say in this process. We will push student feedback through the Senate, directly to faculty and administration.
Revitalize VSG’s Structure
We are committed to addressing internal VSG issues that have been talked about for years. By improving VSG efficiency, we can streamline the process of creating a better, stronger Vanderbilt.
Increase collaboration between VSG and students. We want to empower students with ideas and initiatives by providing them with VSG resources. Students can work alongside whichever branch in VSG falls best with their interests so that they can have an active role in fulfilling their initiative.
Focus VSG’s specific goals. We believe that decreasing the number of standing members in committees will create more room to work directly with and support students outside of VSG. This would also allow for cross-branch collaboration on initiatives.
Bring back the Student Services Committee. When Student Service Committee was removed last year, Campus Life absorbed many of its initiatives and was unable to handle the huge load. Additionally, many of VSG’s historic initiatives that appeal to students have come out of Student Services committee such as Vandy Vans and the Vanderbilt App.