The Central Student Government has had a busy few months. They helped shape a new football seating policy for students, supported a push for increasing diversity and inclusivity led by the Black Student Union, as well as pushed new campus safety initiatives.

In his report to the University’s Board of Regents at their monthly meeting Thursday, Business senior Michael Proppe, CSG president, said each of these initiatives proves the power of students in offering and implementing alternatives to solutions initially proposed by administrators.

“I remind everyone of the lesson we learned from Athletics: administrators might not have all the answers,” he said. “Athletics thought general admission would change student behavior and get more students to the games on time. They thought the negative reaction would peter out over time. They were wrong on both counts. This time, they engaged students and the outcome could not be more positive. It is important to engage students every step of the way before making any change that will affect the student experience.”

Proppe urged the regents and administrators to implement the lesson learned with future endeavors.

“If administrators and students can work together to solve football seating, imagine what we can do on something important,” he said.

The jab drew a few laughs around the table of the University’s executive officers and regents.

In response to the CSG president report, Regent Andrea Fischer Newman (R–Ann Arbor) acknowledged there are times when regents or University officials do not have all the answers.

“I do think you’re right,” she said. “I do think there are times when students and administrators can get more done working together than just administrators making decisions.”

The Board of Regents received criticism earlier in the year for failing to include any students in the presidential search committee that ultimately selected University President-elect Mark Schlissel to serve as the University’s 14th leader.

The search committee ultimately gathered input from a student advisory search committee formed by CSG.

In response to recent criticism by the Black Student Union — which has claimed the University’s administration has failed to act on student demands to improve the campus climate for minority communities — University officials began a series of meetings with organizers to address these issues.

In his report, Proppe outlined numerous safety initiatives students have successfully implemented — such as the CSG and Interfraternity Council’s collaborations on the off-campus Night Owl bus, a new Safe Ride app and the ban on hard liquor at open fraternity parties.

“Students really value safety and are willing to make changes, on our own, to improve safety, health, and wellness,” Proppe said. “Obviously there is more to do.”

Proppe is at the tail end of his presidential term, which will conclude at the end at this year. CSG elections will be held next week.

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