ASUU invites all to get involved

Most students at the U spend little of their college experience getting involved in their student government, more commonly known as ASUU or the Associated Students of the University of Utah.

They don’t vote in elections, volunteer or attend many ASUU-sponsored activities; but every student at the U pays $21.40 per semester to support the organization.

However, leaders of the current ASUU administration want to see the apathetic attitude students now have toward them change.

Cameron Beech, spokesman of Student Body President Jake Kirkham, said ASUU has an “open-door policy” and plans to focus on recruiting more students to take part in the organization during the year. He said he encourages students who are interested in getting involved to visit the ASUU office in the Union, Room 234.

“If students want to get involved in?the U, ASUU is a great place to start,” Beech said. “We’re all here to help?If you come in, you won’t regret it.”

Kirkham said students are more than welcome to come into ASUU to talk to him or other officials if they have questions or concerns.

“The best way to represent students is to be available to them,” he said.

ASUU has a budget of around $1.4 million generated from student fees. The money is used by student leaders for a variety of purposes, from producing concerts to subsidizing childcare.

In addition to the funding it provides for student services and activities, ASUU also functions as the students’ representative to the administration and the State Legislature on key issues, such as tuition increases and health insurance.

Beech said that lobbying at the Legislature is one of ASUU’s more important functions and that the majority of students are unaware of it. He said if more students understood how ASUU works, they would be more likely to get involved.

“The student government is the students’ voice,” he said.

Beech said many students involved in ASUU find the organization to be a good way to connect on a commuter campus.

“You can have the full college experience by getting involved in ASUU and the community,” he said. “It is just a matter of how to get involved-there is an abundance of groups available.”

Beech said most students who apply to volunteer for ASUU get a position at some level or another. Right now, ASUU is taking applications for Freshman Council. The council works underneath the senior class president as an advisory board to help plan activities.

Beech said the council is the perfect way for first-year students to get a taste of what ASUU has to offer.

“It is a great way to start a career of service and involvement at the U,” he said. “We’re confident if (students) come in the office, they’ll want to get involved in ASUU.”

Jamison Brogdon

Maegan Burr

Crowds gather in front of the stage and the Union Free Speech Area awaiting Yellowcard’s performance at the ASUU’s Grand Kerfuffle on April 21.