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Good Bye, Sparkle: Final Checks of the 51st Student Council’s Pledges

The presidency term of “Sparkle”, the 51st student council, which has been working hard this year, has ended. The Sungkyun Times (SKT), therefore, is going to check the activities of Sparkle along with the implementation of the various pledges that were designed for the improvement of Kingos’ school lives.

1. Tuition Fee

Sparkle succeeded to freeze the nominal tuition fee by taking it through the tuition deliberation committee five times. In addition, Sparkle also implemented a pledge to reduce the real tuition fee so that Kingos could directly experience the tuition fee they paid, by improving the student’s educational and welfare environment. However, the tuition fee for foreign students has increased for three years in a row. Despite the foreign students’ complaints, the school said that a slight increase of tuition is inevitable in order to continuously provide high-quality education including ISCs (Intensive Study Courses for International students). Under the argument that it is necessary to prepare a supporting system for foreign students with economic difficulties, the related scholarship will be established this year. Although the tuition fees for foreign students would inevitably increase, it is highly commendable that the students’ needs are also reflected.

2. Education

Sparkle made students less confused at the urgent moment of course registration by automatically deleting the lectures which are successfully registered from the course bag. The existing i-Campus which many students had expressed discomfort with, was improved by the creation of the Extended Canvas LMS Platform. More discussion is needed, however, since there are still many complaints that this new platform is more inconvenient than the existing one. Although Sparkle has succeeded in fulfilling various pledges like these, there are also many unfulfilled pledges. The pledge to put the course bag function on the course registration site was not implemented because of the server overloaded issue. Taking credits in the army which received a lot of attention also has not fulfilled. However, Kim Ye-Ji (Customer/Family Science 15), the president of Sparkle of the Humanities and Social Sciences Campus, mentioned that since school showed a positive response with this issue at the Education Improvement Council, it is expected to be implemented starting next year.

3. Welfare and Facility

The Humanities and Social Sciences Campus Sparkle team ensured the safety of Kingos through the “SKKU:rity” project. They periodically inspected 42 toilets of nearby restaurants to protect Kingos from hidden cameras. Sparkle also signed an MOU with the Hyehwa Police Station to prevent crimes near the campus, by expanding the range of night patrols. Sparkle on the Natural Sciences Campus failed to conduct an inspection for hidden cameras due to budgetary issues. However, they worked hard to improve students’ welfare including replacing aging cell phone chargers and installing S-park, a resting place for Kingos. S-park is the result of the students’ opinion that there are few spaces to rest on the campus. In addition, during the periods when many students are in the library, like during exams, the Kingo-M application started to provide a push notification regarding returning seats as the students leave the library. This system decreased seating problems caused by Kingos who forgot to return their seats when leaving the library. Besides this, setting up an artificial turf, which many Kingos have longed for is also highly commendable. However, it was a bit unsatisfactory that the problem regarding the aging shuttle bus, which many students had expressed inconvenience about for a long time, was not solved.

4. Culture

Injajeon, also known as Jainjeon, a sports festival between the Humanities and Social Sciences Campus and Natural Sciences Campus was held for the first time in five years. Although it is difficult to call it a successful hosting because of the low participation rate, the integration between the two different campuses is a good achievement itself. The integrated festival, which many students had been anticipating was not implemented due to budgetary issues. 5. Communication Since Sparkle emphasized the importance of mutual communication with Kingos, they conducted many projects. First, Sparkle actively communicated with Kingos by establishing a communication board on SKKU:ter. On that board, Kingos do not one-sidedly receive announcements, but rather directly deliver their opinions to the student council. However, since there were not many users on SKKU:ter, it would be better if the advertisement of SKKU:ter was strengthened and became a more powerful site to gather many Kingos’ opinions. In addition, Sparkle conducted a visiting student council project called “Sparkle:U” and communicated with students about many issues including artificial turf and the new semester. Also, Sparkle succeeded in suspending the implementation date of the new semester system from the first semester of 2020 to 2021, by strongly conveying the resistance of students and continuously communicating with the school.

김우재  okemoskim@naver.com

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