The Student Government Association’s judicial branch is looking for an additional supreme court justice to oversee the SGA election process and make decisions on student organization cases.
“Holding a position in SGA enables people to let their voices be heard in a formal setting, expand their knowledge about what the university offers and hone key skills that will be beneficial in the future,” said Associate Justice Ariana Vruwink.
A full judicial branch court is made up of a chief justice and four associate justices.
“We are the elections committee, so we create the ballot, verify the applicants and make sure they have the correct signatures,” said Associate Justice Adam Swanson. “After elections, student organizational conducts begin.”
Swanson explained that chapters 17 and 18 of the University of Wisconsin System set guidelines as to how individuals in organizations are supposed to conduct themselves. If there were a disruption of these standards, the organization would attend a hearing before the court and state its case.
“We would determine sanctioning from there, which could be as light as an apology letter and as heavy as disbanding their organization for six years,” Swanson said. “Your job is just to help other students make better choices in the future.”
The judicial branch is also responsible for auditing student clubs and organizations. The court plans to audit all organizations within the next two years.
“We want to make sure the organizations are running smoothly so that all prospective members of these clubs feel welcomed and enjoy their experience,” Vruwink said. “As you audit, you get to learn about the wide array of student organizations at UW-Stevens Point and the fun activities students can take part in.”
The court currently meets twice a month in the Dreyfus University Center, room 054. Depending on the number of student organizational hearings, that number might increase.
“It’s not at all time-consuming,” said Chief Justice Robert Lyke. “I’ve already gained great communication skills and networking opportunities through my time [as chief justice].”
Applications are found on the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point website. Students can also contact Lyke at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
“We’re looking for a student who’s responsible, and if you have been involved with other student organizations before, you are sure to stand out,” Lyke said.
Vruwink said bylaws and statutes, which student organizations and SGA must follow, can seem a bit intimidating at first, but everyone in SGA’s judicial branch is welcoming and more than willing to give a helping hand.
“Becoming an associate justice is a great way to get involved on campus and is something that students can put on their resume or scholarship application to stand out,” Vruwink said. “Acquiring a position in SGA enables students to expand various skills that future employers will be looking for.”