Opinion

Tips on how to overhaul SG Senate

If Donald Trump was CEO of UM SG Senate, Inc. his message to most of the employees would probably be, “You’re fired!” Too bad he isn’t; he and I would have a good deal of agreement on that issue. As it stands, the Student Government Senate is a monument of bureaucracy and inefficiency. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of great senators doing constructive things, but the simple truth is the number of seats and where they are coming from is hampering their overall efficiency and effectiveness.

Currently there are Senators representing nearly every school, residential college and major student organization on campus. Everyone who has a unique demographic, no matter how obscure, thinks they are entitled to a Senate seat. Please tell me why it’s so imperative that the Sports & Recreational Interest Club Federation has its own senate seat?

A lot of the “unique demographic” constituencies are double represented. FEC and SpectrUM each have their own Senate seat. Am I to believe that no Cubans live in Hecht Residential College? There must be a few GBLT students in the School of Business. Why isn’t it good enough that those students be represented by the Senators elected from the more broad constituencies?

With unpaid SG positions like Senate, many people have a natural tendency towards “more is better.” What they are failing to realize is that the opposite is true-less is more.

The most obvious and problematic issue with the Senate is that the supply is near-even with the demand. Because there are so many seats a student can run for, the number of people choosing to run gets so spread out that often times seats go uncontested or with little opposition. This allows for dead weight and underachieving senators to slip through the cracks. If you had fewer seats available, there would be much greater competition for each seat. Greater competition would lead to higher accountability for existing Senators, and you would quickly see the fat being trimmed out of the Senate and a higher level of productivity from the remaining Senators. The miscellaneous groups left out in the dust could turn themselves to a more appropriate and efficient role in the Student Government process-effective lobbying for their causes.

In the case of the SG Senate, the old criticism the Japanese levy against American business applies: “Too many chiefs, not enough Indians.”

Don Donelson can be contacted at d.donelson@umiami.edu.

February 25, 2005

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Navaughn Donaldson knew one thing mattered above all when he was forced to start playing center ahea ...

This spring hasn’t been easy for Miami redshirt sophomore Tate Martell, the former Ohio State quarte ...

The 2019-20 college basketball season is more than six months away, but the University of Miami Hurr ...

The University of Miami spring game Saturday will be here before you know it, and right about now, c ...

With about a third of the regular season left, the Miami Hurricanes baseball team is on the rise and ...

The Division of Student Affairs hosted a reception to present campus-wide awards and scholarships to ...

The University of Miami celebrates Earth Day with a host of activities at or near the Lakeside Patio ...

The nation’s oldest and most-widely known academic honor society inducted 45 students from the Colle ...

For the second installment of its “What Matters to U” lecture series, Student Government invited act ...

There is at least one member of House Hurricane in the Seven Kingdoms: alumnus David Nutter, who sha ...

Because of expected inclement weather, Thursday's game time has been moved up one hour to 5 p.m ...

Michelle Atherley earned the University of Miami track and field program's fourth ACC outdoor h ...

Canes' recruiting class now stands 25th in 247Sports Composite Ranking. ...

Miami head women's basketball coach Katie Meier announced Wednesday the signing of Moulayna Joh ...

The fifth-seeded and No. 21-ranked Miami women's tennis team begins ACC Championship action Thu ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.