Say hello to new SGA Student Body President, Bradley Ballou

Ben Wimmer

UNCW students have elected Bradley Ballou and Cameron Thomas to serve as the new SGA student body President and Vice President. Election results were announced last Thursday at the Hawk’s Nest. Inauguration will take place on April 12, 2005 at 6 p.m. in the Golden Hawk Room.

Some major issues behind Ballou’s campaign include: diversity on campus, grading scale inconsistencies, growth control for enrollment, tuition hikes, and the possibility of making UNSea cards available for off-campus use through local businesses. Being SGA President comes with plenty of responsibility and decision making, so Mr. Ballou took the time to address key issues and answer a few questions for The Seahawk.

Q: Can you explain your position on the inconsistencies in UNCW’s grading scales?

A: Basically, at UNCW you can take the same class with two different professors and get two different grades for the same course, because there is no standardized grading scale between all professors. Ideally, I would like to see an A+ scale at UNCW. An A+ is worth a 4.3 at N.C. State; however the highest GPA you can receive is a 4.0, if UNCW adopted this scale it would help students bring up grades they made in some of the tougher courses.

Q: Could you explain your plans for UNSea cards to be used off campus?

A: I think it would be a great idea to bring us together with the community, some other schools have worked with local businesses so that they can use their meal plans at those places, at the very least I would like to see UNSea cards being used as debit cards at local businesses.

Q: I understand that more diversity on campus is one of your goals.

A: UNCW has been doing everything it can to increase diversity on campus. However, I would like to see the university get out into surrounding high schools and reach out to local students to give them an opportunity to be more prepared for college. When I say diversity I don’t mean just skin color, I mean diversity of class, diversity of ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, and different backgrounds; I feel that we should give students a feeling of real world atmosphere through diversity.

Q: Do you have any plans that deal with UNCW’s parking problem?

A: A lot of problems are temporary and should be alleviated, it’s a very difficult issue and we are working on that. No final decision has been made but most likely there is a parking deck coming to UNCW. If so, I would like to see the cost for students keeping passes to stay affordable.

Q: Can students expect any changes with regard to tuition hikes?

A: I would like to say first that, Brad Wilson the chair of the Board of Governors was a big part of the tuition freeze and has been a great advocate this year. I do understand that the chancellor has expressed interest in a plan right now that would set tuition at a consistent rate, in other words, you would pay the same amount in tuition each year that you attend college, and that rate wouldn’t change. I would also like to see that plan become retroactive for students who are not freshmen.

Q: Would you like to add or say anything to UNCW’s students?

A: Thank you to the students. I had a great time while campaigning and we won’t let you down.