ASG plans to create a student-led town hall to amplify student voices

Adam McDonald, Staff Writer

The Associated Student Government spoke with City College Webmaster Hong Lieu on Friday morning about creating a “student-led” Campus Climate Town Hall, to offer a place for dialogue between the ASG and students to voice issues.

Lieu co-chairs the Campus Climate Advisory Committee, which hosts a monthly town hall on Zoom that is open to faculty, staff and students. 

But students rarely participate, and the discussion is mostly led by employees. 

“There’s just a lot of room for input from students and for a student-led discussion,” Lieu said. “And I think running it through ASG makes a lot of sense.”

The senators had actually been working on a project similar to what Lieu was proposing. They created a Virtual Learning Climate survey to gauge insight into the unique difficulties students may be facing this semester.

ASG President Carson Mitchell said the survey should be released to the campus sometime this week.

Just prior to their discussion with Lieu, the senate approved a $500 allocation to provide a financial incentive for participants in the survey. Random students would receive a portion of the money in sort of a raffle. 

The financial incentive would serve to motivate students to participate, so the ASG can maximize the numbers of responses and get more representative results. The details are still being worked out.

Lieu also said the survey results could fuel discussion at the “student-led” town hall. 

The current Campus Climate Advisory Committee town hall resulted from a climate survey that was sent out to employees a few years back, Lieu said. 

“That’s kind of how the process goes,” he said. “You put out the survey, you get your feedback from the survey, and then you use the town hall.” 

This new separate version of the town hall would center around student concerns with the conversations led by students. 

Not many students have come to the current town halls, Lieu said.

“I feel like we are inadvertently glossing over student issues just by the lack of representation there,” he said. 

Student Trustee Lilli McKinney said she and other senators felt that way too. 

“It’s been an entire year, we’re not getting a lot of representation,” she said. “That’s one of the things we’re trying to work on.” 

As far as what the actual ASG-led town hall would look like, Lieu said Zoom and Google Forms can do just about everything it needs. If the senate releases the Virtual Learning Climate survey soon and figures out the logistics behind hosting the town hall, there would be a separate meeting for employees and students.

“Let’s get on top of this thing, start planning, and hopefully get a first date settled,” said Mitchell.