Columns, Opinion

RAMONES: Letter to the Union

If you know me ‘-‘- especially if you knew me my freshmen year ‘-‘- I’m never short of ideas on how BU can improve (to say it nicely). Maybe it’s because I was a Harvard reject, was waitlisted at BU and BU was the only university that accepted me (and I’m proud of it). Maybe it’s because I resent the fact that I was offered no financial aid and I’m in debt up to my eyeballs. Or maybe it’s because I could never attach a face to my scapegoats, all I could do was complain about BU.

I was actually kind of embarrassed about going to BU. It wasn’t like the name wasn’t recognized, but while sitting at scholarship luncheons, going around the table for introductions, I realized my school was’ number 60 on Newsweek’s list of top colleges. I started to question why I was shelling out 50 grand a year.

It wasn’t until I started speaking to Matt Seidel at Late Nite,’ and started seeing there were people like me working to make all of our experiences at BU better, that I realized I wasn’t really helping the situation.

It takes courage to step up and be seen as the person to go to get your problems fixed and, at most times, get blamed for what’s not happening. Especially when the students they’re representing are not taking the time to learn what their administration is up to before they start complaining about it.

I was completely surprised when Seidel talked about what the Union had been doing this semester, and I started wondering why I hadn’t known about it. Was it because it wasn’t getting publicized or because I wasn’t being active enough as a student to check out if my student government was acting on what they promised? Where else do I not hold people accountable for the actions they promised they’d take?

Granted, we’ve been conditioned from the past to think that we can’t do much to affect any type of policy, but I think this recent national election has proven that, despite our previous generation, we can not only change things, but we can start to change things from the inside.

The reason Barack Obama did as well as he did was because he empowered the voters to be the change that they wanted to see in this country. Student Union, as our representatives, you have to inspire us to do the same. It takes more than a handout on campus safety to show us that. If you can’t change anything more than that, at least give us an avenue to talk to someone that can, and tell us why we’re not seeing the progress we’ve been demanding.

Whenever you take a position of leadership, it’s less about doing everything yourself and more about finding ways to influence others to get the job done. It matters more the legacy of progress that you leave behind than your name being attached to pet projects.

Student government, I applaud you. You have shown me that it’s more my responsibility to hold you accountable and to make sure that you’re listening to my concerns, and it’s good to see your presence on campus in your hard work in moving to pass medical amnesty, promoting a greener BU and a safer campus. I hope that it will grow and inspire others to stop complaining and do something for themselves to make BU the university they want it to be. Hopefully students can take that responsibility into other areas of their lives.

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One Comment

  1. Just in case anyone reading the comments here has something on their mind that they’d like to change about BU, you should know that the Union is having a Town Hall style meeting this Wednesday (7pm, BU Central) where anyone can come and suggest an initiative for us to work on. Hope to see you there!