The Student Government Association’s proposal to change intervisitation is nearing its completion.
The Intervisitation Committee has been meeting weekly since September to work on their proposal. SGA held a town hall meeting on Oct. 26 to get student input. The meeting was another step in the long process of revising and reworking the proposal.
Sophomore Kate Engstrom, SGA executive assistant and chair of the Intervisitation Committee, described SGA’s reasoning.
“We are doing the proposal because we think it’s what the students want,” Engstrom said.
The next step will be a survey that will go out to all the students on campus. Engstrom predicted that the survey will run for about two weeks and that the proposal will be finished shortly after that. However, the proposal will still have to go through SGA’s president, the dean of students and the Student Affairs Council before finally reaching Concordia’s president and provost.
All in all, Engstrom said that the soonest we could see change is during the fourth block of classes this academic year or early next year.
So far, the proposal includes topics such as security, equality, roommate issues and floor issues. Amendments were also added to the proposal after the town hall meeting. During the meeting, students and SGA members discussed positive and negative aspects of the intervisitation policy as well as issues that the policy does not address.
The current intervisitation policy addresses issues of privacy for some students who feel uncomfortable having the opposite gender on their floor after hours. It also addresses security issues.
However, the intervisitation policy “is not transgender inclusive,” said Michael Dyrud, a sophomore mathematics major who attended the town hall meeting.
Dyrud also described another issue that was brought up by students: the enforceability of the current intervisitation policy. Some of the upperclassmen who spoke stated that they had to turn in their student IDs when they visited dorms of the opposite gender. This prevented them from getting away with breaking the intervisitation policy. Now, students aren’t required to do so, which means there is no way to keep track of who is or isn’t breaking the rules.
Some of the other points of conflict include roommate and floor issues. Students with roommates sometimes find themselves in conflict over whether girl/boyfriends should be allowed over during certain times. There are also issues involving students who prefer to go to and from the bathroom during shower times in their towels or robes.
Intervisitation helps to alleviate these issues, but students such as sophomore Jesse VonWald question whether it really is the best way deal with these problems.
“It can all be solved by putting clothes on,” VonWald said.
Another issue that inevitably comes up when talking about intervisitation is whether or not donors will cut funding if policy is changed. Engstrom, however, stated that there has been great change in intervisitation policy over the last fifty years but that never have donors significantly cut funding due to these changes.
Dyrud went further to state that he thinks that intervisitation should be changed regardless of whether or not donors threaten to reduce funding.
One of students’ biggest issues with intervisitation is that they believe they should be considered adults because that’s what they are.
“I feel that it kind of holds us back. It treats us like children,” VonWald said.
Several other students have agreed with VonWald’s opinion, including sophomore Catherine Mcconnell, a psychology major.
“We’re adults. We’re supposed to learn lessons” Mcconnell said.
These lessons include learning to deal with roommates and to be responsible for the amount of time spent doing homework and hanging out with friends.
Kyle Wahlberg, a second-year psychology major, summed it up when he said that in real life “you’re not gonna have someone telling you ‘okay, it’s two o’clock.’”