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SGA cuts current-term GPA requirement

By David Floyd
On February 19, 2014

The ETSU Student Government Association approved Tuesday an  amendment eliminating the current-term GPA requirements for senators and executive officers set forth by the SGA Constitution.
Senators and officers will still be expected to maintain a minimum cumulative GPA throughout their term. Officers are expected to retain a 3.0 cumulative GPA and senators, a 2.5.
"I think, ethically speaking, you should still be able to serve in the capacity of a senator or an executive member if you have a bad semester or experience any personal crisis that hinders you from making the semesterly grades that allow you to keep serving," SGA President Mike Wallace said.
Wallace said that he believed a cumulative average to be enough to ensure that individuals affiliated with the SGA maintain good standing at the university and that he believed the current-term GPA requirement to be excessive.
"If [senators] are already in good academic standing, then why set another bar for reassurance of that academic standing?" Wallace said.
The amendment was one of two Wallace submitted for review on this subject.
The first set up an appeals process, allowing students who failed to meet the current-term GPA requirement to contend their case; however, this amendment was considered to be retroactive by the internal affairs committee and was withdrawn.
"A lot of people didn't like the timing of it." said Kallam McKay, chair of the internal affairs committee. "We thought a lot of it was retroactive. [The amendments] kind of gave people a way to get out of [punishment] for this semester."
When the committee announced its opinion on Wallace's first amendment,  it also said that the amendment should include a process for removing officers and senators who fail to meet the requirement.
Despite recommendation against the change, many senators expressed support. They explained the lack of control people have over circumstances that might distract them from their studies. Some also expressed the opinion that cumulative GPA was enough of a threshold to determine whether a senator was fit for service.
Dissenting from opinion of the committee, McKay expressed personal support. "To be on good standing with the college you must have a 2.0 GPA. I think that if we're in good standing with the college, we're in good standing with SGA."

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