(I will write more in a little while expressing my conflicting emotions regarding this proposal but I want to keep my personal emotions separate from the more interesting and important material below.)
A few weeks ago, I described how NASPA will not allow student members to vote on the issue of ACPA/NASPA consolidation if the issue is put to a vote by the NASPA membership.Â Last night, I sent the following message to Dr. Elizabeth Griego, president of NASPA, and Ms. Gwen Dungy, Executive Director of NASPA.
Please find attached a proposed resolution for the NASPA Board of Directors to consider at its next meeting.Â We trust that you and the Board will act on the spirit and merits of this proposed resolution, smoothing over any technical flaws or procedural missteps we may have made.
As previously discussed with both of you, this proposal requests that Student Affiliates be allowed full participation in any vote of the NASPA membership on the issue of ACPA/NASPA consolidation.Â The signatories of this proposal are experienced, dedicated members of NASPA who firmly believe that our voices must be heard on this issue and given equal consideration.Â We care deeply about NASPA and student affairs and we believe it unjust and unethical that our voices will be silenced on this important issue merely because we are currently pursuing further education.
We understand that some interpret the association’s bylaws as prohibiting Student Affiliates from voting on this matter.Â We disagree with that interpretation.Â However, even if we concede that the current bylaws prohibit Student Affiliates from voting on this issue, we assert that the bylaws are unjust and must be changed or overridden; bylaws that deny a voice to dedicated members in this critical issue are contrary to our professional and ethical values.
Finally, we hope that whatever the outcome of this resolution the Board understands and remembers that there are groups within NASPA that historically have been denied the right to vote, including Student and Associate Affiliates.Â Even if circumstances do not permit the Board or the voting membership the ability to grant these groups voting rights, these groups must be allowed and encouraged to meaningfully participate in determining the future of this organization and our profession.
On behalf of my colleagues,
Kevin R. Guidry
PhD Student, Higher Education & Student Affairs Indiana University
I have privately thanked them many times but I once again offer my sincere thanks to everyone involved in putting forth this proposal.Â Elizabeth Griego and Jan Walbert were extraordinarily gracious with their time in helping us put together this proposal with the full benefit of their experience, knowledge, and support.Â The signatories of the proposal were wonderful in their moral and material support.Â And, most importantly, my behind-the-scenes team of Dan Bureau, Nick Grainger, Chris Medrano, and Nolan Yaws were there every step of the way to keep me on the right path and ensure that this proposal expressed our emotions in a professional and respectful manner.