SA’s Student Rally tackles tough issues in small groups


Students gather and talk Monday evening at the SA Student Rally.

By Mikah Walker

DeKALB — Students came to be a voice for their groups and clubs.The Student Association welcomed students to share their views in small group discussions at the Student Rally 7 to 9 p.m. Monday in the Holmes Student Center Capitol Room.

About 30 students attended the rally. Groups were given a pieces of paper with a variety of topics to talk about.

As an icebreaker, students introduced themselves by saying their names, majors and why they chose NIU.

At 7:15 p.m., the discussion rules were displayed on the projector as Participation, Respect, Open & honest, Confidentiality, Space and Speak — also known as P.R.O.C.E.S.S.

At one table, two students had an ongoing argument about immigration laws and how those laws have affected their families as immigrants.

A lot of the students and the community came to be a voice for their groups and clubs.

“I found it interesting hearing other people’s perspectives on healthcare,” sophomore marketing major Masood Ahmed said.

From politics to medicine, students spoke about their concerns with passion and an interest by interrupting when they disagreed with one another .

“My group and I liked how everyone was passionate about their views, specifically on Medicare,” Emanuel Stemmons, senior political science major said.

The biggest issue explained was the involvement in students at NIU. Some students are so focused on their academics, financial support, and work that many clubs and groups lack involvement and participation.

The SA host Ashley Hines, spoke about the need for political growth on campus and getting students to know more about elections.

Students were mindful of what others had to say.

“It was surprising to see students listening and respecting each other because on social media, everyone picks sides and [does] not see what is the middle,” first-year psychology major Zoe Wabsworth said.

Many students agreed on what others had to say and gave each other a chance to explain why they might feel so strongly about their own ideas.

“More attention needs to be brought toward food insecurities because I feel it is not addressed, and people do not know what is it and how they can help,” Ashley Hines, legislative director of the SA, said.

Toward the end of the rally, the groups came together and shared a list of issues including involvement, healthcare, financial aid, diversity, elections and controversial topics they strongly felt needed to improve and how it will take time adjusting to changes like the renovations at the Holmes Student Center.