Student government presidents and representatives from the four-year public institutions across the state will gather at CSU-Pueblo this Saturday to discuss higher education in Colorado for a meeting and subsequent reception of the Colorado Student Government Coalition.
The coalition was formed with the intent to “represent the students of Colorado institutions through voicing the concerns and sentiments of its constituency, especially through political advocacy,” according to the CSGC official constitution. The meeting Saturday will be the third since its formation in October of 2014.
CSU-Pueblo Associated Students’ Government President Timothy Zercher, who is public relations and hosting director for the event, said, “(The coalition) is devoted to bringing about positive change, and for offering a cohesive voice for the students of Colorado to the leaders of Colorado.”
Zercher, who stressed the importance of these CSGC meetings, said, “For the students of Colorado, it allows their voices to be heard on a much larger scale than was possible before CSGC existed. Student issues can be broadcasted with much more authority now that multiple universities’ student governments can band together easily.”
“For higher education in Colorado in general, it is important because it allows state legislature to really hear what is going on at universities as students see it,” he said.
In the coalition’s previous two formal meetings at Metropolitan State University and Colorado University-Boulder, resolutions were discussed and passed to address on-campus sexual assaults, as well as the need for increased funding for higher education throughout Colorado.
Saturday’s meeting will include various topics of discussion, including resolutions of support for Senate House Bill 15-1027, a bill that would make American Indian students from tribes with historic ties to Colorado eligible for resident tuition rates at state colleges and universities, as well as one of support to Native American higher education.
CSU-Pueblo President Lesley Di Mare, who will attend and speak at the event, has personally funded the meeting in support of the CSGC and its importance for higher education throughout the state.
“She is underwriting this event to show support for the students of Colorado. She understands how important an organization like CSGC could be for the students and believes that it could have a very positive impact on higher education,” Zercher said.
Saturday’s meeting will also feature an entirely new aspect in the form of an informal, closed reception, also funded by Di Mare.
“The formal meetings are very procedural and we follow Roberts Rules (of order) very closely. The reception however is a completely new event. We have never had a reception like this, so we are excited to see how it goes,” Zercher said.
As to the future of the organization, Zercher said, “I see the CSGC as continuing to gain momentum in the coming years so that it’s eventually both widely known, and widely respected by state leadership. If future generations of CSU-Pueblo ASG presidents stay committed to the state’s growth through the CSGC, CSU-Pueblo ASG could continue to be a strong influence in this coalition.”