Student Government discusses retention rate

Aubrey Zych, Staff Writer

 

On Wednesday, Sept. 28, members of the Student Government Association (SGA) shared thoughts to fix one of Le Moyne’s biggest problems over the years: the retention rate.

In 2010, the average freshmen retention rate was 83.8 percent. Generally, Le Moyne strives to reach a rate of at least 90 percent.

Members of the SGA collaborated on notes and shared ideas regarding what they liked, disliked and wished to change about Le Moyne in hopes of increasing the retention rate.

Another topic of discussion involved the food options offered on campus. Members agreed that if there were better food options in the cafeteria, outside vendors and healthier meal choices, more students would leave the cafeteria satisfied.

The SGA has already made plans to fix this problem. As mentioned in prior meetings, the Food Service Committee intends to switch up the menu in the cafeteria, thus creating healthier and more eco-friendly options, and began discussing the possibility of other outside vendors on campus.

Furthermore, SGA intends to look at the availability of food on campus, primarily the hours of operation in places such as the C-Store and Den. IT is working with off-campus vendors to increase the number of places where Dolphin Dollars are accepted.

This meeting also focused on complaints concerning campus security. Many students who have a car on campus, both commuters and residents, have found themselves faced with a parking ticket, as well as the standard fines.

“I’m going to be in debt for the rest of my life just from Le Moyne security parking tickets,” Joe O’Connor, an SGA member, said.

The SGA has already set up a meeting with the Security Office to address this issue and hope to have it resolved as soon as possible.

Another aspect of Le Moyne that was discussed was the limited diversity on campus, both ethnically and geographically.

According to research conducted by the U.S. News College Report, at Le Moyne, 83 percent of students have identified themselves as white, six percent as Hispanic or Latino, three percent as Black or African American, two percent as Asian and one percent as Native American or Alaska Native. Evidently, racial diversity is lacking at Le Moyne, and many students have expressed desires to see this changed.

Likewise, geographically, most Le Moyne students are from Syracuse or surrounding cities. Only nine percent of students are from out of state, most of which are still from surrounding states, such as Massachusetts, New Hampshire or Pennsylvania.

At the meeting, students agreed that Le Moyne Admissions should reach out to students all over the country to create a more varied student body.

SGA members also brought up concerns regarding the “low number of internships” available for Le Moyne students. Many students present said that they wished Le Moyne’s Career Services would reach out to more employers, in order to give students more options when it comes to job searches. Nearly all members agreed that Le Moyne students should be given the same opportunities as students from Syracuse University and other nearby colleges.

Despite some of the complaints and oppositions that were discussed, every member had something positive to say about the college.

Many students enjoy the “family-like” community and small size, while others mentioned an appreciation for the availability of professors during convenient office hours. Other positives included small class sizes, endless ways to get involved on campus and Le Moyne’s never-ending desire to improve.

The SGA ended the meeting by looking at a list of ideas to suggest to different departments around campus.

Have a suggestion for improving the retention rate? Have your voice heard! The SGA always welcomes new ideas, suggestions and questions from students. Go to their website at lemoyne.campusgroups.com