Bill lowers GPA requirement for unpaid MSA positions

The change was proposed last year but was withdrawn due to disagreement within Senate.

A bill lowering the GPA requirement for unpaid Missouri Students Association Senate leadership positions was passed in full Senate on Oct. 25.

Bill 57-09 amends the GPA requirement according to the standards put forth by the code of conduct for MU students.

Originally, the minimum required GPA for unpaid leadership positions was a 2.5. The new bill lowers it to a 2.2.

This change was proposed last year by former Senate Speaker Mark McDaniel. However, it was eventually withdrawn due to disagreement over which positions should have higher grade requirements.

The bill that just passed applies only to nonpaid positions such as committee chairs, vice chairs and senators. It affects both current MSA senators and those applying for a position.

“This year I wrote it and put it out there as something to change for certain positions,” said Joseph Sell, author of the bill. “We shouldn’t have to hold [MSA senators] to a higher standard than what is necessary if they aren’t receiving any compensation.”

The bill also stipulates that students must not only maintain the minimum GPA required by MU, but also maintain the minimum GPA for their individual colleges as well, said Tim Davis, chair of the Campus and Community Relations Committee.

Despite the changes brought forth by the bill, Davis said it is unlikely that they will have a great effect on MSA representatives.

“Most everybody that’s in MSA has a fairly good GPA from what I know,” Davis said. “FERPA and privacy laws prevent me from knowing what people’s GPAs are, but in the four years that I’ve been here, I’ve never seen anyone removed from office because of their academic standing.”

While the bill’s impact is unknown, it serves as a reminder for many of the importance of academics in leadership positions.

“I think it serves as a reminder that even though we are student leaders on this campus, we are students first and leaders second and our main mission here is to graduate,” Davis said.

Edited by Sarah Hallam | shallam@themaneater.com

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