Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Regents Decrease Student Representation
The recently named UA President Search Committee to replace Peter Likins shows a marked decrease in student representation over the search committee of 1997. The 1997 search committee included 22 members, including three UA students.
This year’s committee will have 31 members, but only two students (ASUA President, Cade Bernsen, and Student Regent, Ben Graff).
The rationale for the decrease in student representation is unclear. Across the country, the trend is for increased student representation in “university governance.”
Any number of factors may account for the decrease in student representation. Perhaps Regent Boice, who was in charge of forming the committee, does not recognize the maturity of UA students or adequately realize the importance of student input in shaping the policy and personnel of our university. Another part of the equation could be a failure of Student Regent Ben Graff to effectively advocate for student representation on the committee.
In addition to the general decrease in student representation, the absence of graduate student representation is notable. More than thirteen hundred graduate students serve as research assistants and thereby play a crucial role in advancing research at the UA. The exclusion of graduate student representation on the UA President Search Committee is problematic. The nominal claim of the ASUA President to represent all UA students does not make up for the lack of genuine graduate student representation on this committee.