In the wake of the suspension of classes and major activities across the campus on Tuesday, the Purdue student government met for its final in-person session.
Jo Boileau, president of Purdue student government, expressed the frustration many students felt after President Purdue Mitch Daniels’ announcement to move all lessons online until further notice.
All Big Ten schools have implemented social removal measures through online learning with the exception of the University of Nebraska. About half of the student governments were involved in the decision. Purdue was not one of them, said Boileau.
“Nowhere in the decision making process did they bring a student perspective to say,” What aren’t we thinking about? “Boileau said.” I think it’s not an appropriate use of the resources available, especially the student government. “
Boileau asked the administration when he expects to receive further updates such as an “activation date” when the administration makes a decision for the remainder of the semester.
“The answer was basically how things evolve – things will evolve,” he said.
In light of the coronavirus epidemic, PSG unanimously voted to approve the medical absence policy, allowing students to recover work for justified medical absences in up to five business days. As the Senate voted on the bills, Boileau said his phone pinged with messages from other student presidents across the country. When the committee made its first indentation, Boileau hurriedly addressed the elephant in the room, expressing how he and Vice President Assata Gilmore had been excluded.
“It’s a very frustrating answer as a student, and it’s a frustrating answer as someone who believes that the student government is an entity used to ensure that the right information is disclosed. We all go to class with people, so if we hear voices, it helps if we have the right information, “said Boileau.
Susan Prieto-Welch, director of counseling and psychological services, was the guest speaker for the night. He informed PSG that operations will continue normally, but are trying to provide services to those who don’t live on campus. These services can pose various difficulties for CAPS, including additional certifications for psychologists and clinicians, as well as regulations on which software is considered fairly secure.
“I identified some software tools that would be HIPAA compliant, but then there’s another process with the IT side of things,” said Prieto-Welch. “The point is, I’m not sure how quickly we can make it work.”
Boileau said he wanted to make a statement across campus on Friday. He suggests that students often return to the FAQ page on the University website, as it is updated daily at 5:00 PM.
PSG is moving all of its operations online, no longer hosts student sessions of the Supreme Court and cancels meetings in person in the Senate.
“For PSG, many of our events by the end of the year exceed the 50 student threshold and must be canceled,” said Boileau. “So we are focusing on the transition documents, hoping that they will become reality next year or the following years.”