St. Paul student representative may no longer be required

A proposed Board of Regents amendment would remove the St. Paul campus requirement.

Students in St. Paul campus-based colleges may no longer have a student representative to the Board of Regents if an amendment proposed by the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly and the Minnesota Student Association passes in March. There are four student representatives to the Board of Regents, three from MSA and one from GAPSA, but in the proposed amendment, only two must be from MSA and one from GAPSA, with the fourth position a toss-up between the two groups, depending on the qualifications of the students who apply. That change, however, would take away the requirement that one of the representatives be enrolled in a St. Paul campus-based college. GAPSA President Kristi Kremers , who thought of the idea, said since graduate and professional students make up about 40 percent of the student population on the Twin Cities campus, they should have more than one student representative. âÄúIn virtually all of the presentations [at the Board of Regents meetings], the focus was on undergraduate student issues,âÄù Kremers said. âÄúItâÄôs so that we can make the issues and concerns of graduate and professional students more well-known and talked about.âÄù GAPSA Vice President for Administrative Affairs Imee Cambronero is GAPSAâÄôs lone representative and was part of the amendment proposal. âÄúI think this is an opportunity to have representation from the entire Twin Cities campus and to bring light to more graduate and professional issues,âÄù Cambronero said. Emma Olson , MSAâÄôs current St. Paul campus representative to the Board of Regents, also helped propose the amendment, despite the fact that the requirement for her position would virtually be eliminated. The former MSA president said the idea behind the amendment was so the Twin Cities campus is seen as a whole rather than two separate campuses. âÄúItâÄôs really about representing the students in the best way possible and finding students to represent all of the students, not just a specific constituency,âÄù Olson said. Some students enrolled in St. Paul-based colleges, however, donâÄôt like the amendment. Amber Besch , a junior agricultural education student, said the St. Paul campus needs representation because the two campuses are not similar. âÄúEven though it is one campus, itâÄôs very different and itâÄôs diverse,âÄù Besch said. âÄúThis campus is more agriculturally based.âÄù Senior fisheries and wildlife student Bryan Featherstone said the St. Paul campus simply has a âÄúdifferent atmosphere.âÄù Still, some St. Paul students like Olson donâÄôt see a problem with the proposal. Senior biology student Ashley Kimball said representation wouldnâÄôt matter since âÄúeveryone is so spread outâÄù over the two campuses. Cambronero said she thinks the amendment will pass when it is proposed at the next Board of Regents meeting March 13. âÄúItâÄôs my understanding that the board is pretty supportive and agrees with this policy, so I feel confident that it should pass with no problem,âÄù Cambronero said.