riggs and bragg

Chase Riggs (right) and Jaron Bragg (left) will serve as president and vice president.

West Virginia University’s Student Government Association has shared new plans for the spring semester, mentioning upcoming legislation and events it plans to have a part in.

The main goal of the SGA every semester is to be a student advocacy organization that is responsible for representing the needs of students. The association serves as a liaison between the students’ needs and the University’s higher administration.

SGA President Chase Riggs has noticed, with this school year being more difficult than years past, how important meeting in person is for him and his association, and how different work this year has been for him and his administration.

“This semester has been very disruptive for our students in Morgantown, and you know SGA as a body has not met fully in person,” Riggs said. “We’ve met virtually on Zoom or in small cohorts following all policies, but you know we rely on in-person interaction with the students, so we’re working to seek out concerns from our fellow Mountaineers.”

For this semester, however, the SGA has been able to meet together enough to form new legislation and ideas and to help students.

“We have a few programming legislations in the pipeline, and we’re also attending Big XII on the Hill, with our fellow colleagues, to meet with congressmen and women to address existing issues that students in higher education are facing now,” Riggs said.

“We’re looking at COVID relief, additional stimulus, college affordability and meeting with West Virginia state representatives as well,” Riggs said. “We also have a subcommittee to address the costly use of third party tools or platforms in the classroom, especially now because of the financial stressors that have been increased due to COVID.”

Riggs also plans to be monitoring the upcoming state legislative session just to see if there is any specific legislation he finds that could affect education here in West Virginia.

Alongside looking at new legislation and meeting with state officials, the SGA also plans to hold events to promote certain events coming up.

“Our community engagement committee hopes to plan to have a second voter registration drive, we had one this October, because there is a Morgantown municipal election that is approaching later this spring,” Riggs said. “Our hope with that is that students are able to become registered in Morgantown or the city in which they’ve lived for the last four years.”

Riggs is also looking out for student organizations and their needs, describing financial aid they could receive through the SGA.

“We have a bureau of finance that has grants that are available for student organizations, and any organization looking for a grant can find more information about that on our website.”

With an SGA election nearby, as well as the needs of thousands of students at hand, Riggs wanted to make it clear that the SGA is here to help.

“If they (students) have anything that is of importance to them, that they’d like to share with us, we’re happy to help them in any way possible that we can,” he said.