SA polls students in Whatcha Thinking Thursdays

5 April 2017
Alex Garoffolo, Student Writer

SA uses the program to reach a broader range of students by going to them instead of waiting for the students to come to SA.

The next time you have an idea for SA, save it for Thursday and it could be worth its weight in sugary goodness.

As students exit classes on Thursdays this year, they may see people in golf carts driving around campus, inquiring as to if anybody wants a FREE doughnut. Yet, as everybody knows, most things in life aren’t truly free. In exchange for the doughnut, SA representatives of the program “Whatcha Thinking Thursday” will ask questions relevant to current events on campus or to TU in general.

After homecoming, SA asked students about their impressions of the activities, what went well and what could have been planned better. Administration asked SA to get opinions on whether students felt safe on campus, which is a big issue for all universities across America, especially with regards to sexual assault. The program also assists SA because students give general feedback about SA and its operations on campus. According to Manlove, “the feedback has been pretty fruitful.”

The program’s original intent was to reach a broader spectrum of students to see what they want from Student Association and the university as a whole. Manlove expands: “while SA has Student Investigative Committee (SIC) and the Student Experience Council (SEC), they still only generate feedback from a small portion of the student body and require the students to come to us. With Whatcha Thinking Thursday, we come to them.” For those students wishing to receive free sugary treats, Manlove advises checking around the academic buildings on the Old U or Samson Plaza outside ACAC.

“Whatcha Thinking Thursdays” came from a leadership conference that Manlove and other SA members attended this past summer, adapted from a program at another university cleverly titled “What Do You Want Wednesday.” The ultimate goal of the program, as Manlove puts it, is “to get a more general idea of what the entire campus is feeling, rather than that small subset of students that have enough motivation or time to bring an issue to us because in a perfect world, that would happen, but it’s not realistic.”

In addition, the program helps SA make connections with students face-to-face, something the organization has been “trying to improve because many of our operations are behind the scenes.”

As for the future of the program, Manlove says it looks bright. “We plan to continue the program in the future as SA continues to develop our transparency and relationship with the student body. It was a good first year, and we’ve learned a lot on how to improve it. We hope to see it grow and improve in the years to come.”