Part-Time Students to Become Eligible for Student Trustee Position

BARNSTABLE – An amendment that would change eligibility requirements for Student Trustees for all state colleges and universities has been passed by the Massachusetts State Senate.

The change was led by the Cape Cod Community College Student Government Association.

State institutions elect a Student Trustee to sit on their college or university’s Board of Trustees, who brings a student voice to the decision making processes related to finances and operation of the institution.

Currently, students must be enrolled on a full-time basis to be eligible to serve as Student Trustees.

However, demographics have shifted considerably over the decades since the law’s inception as more than two-thirds of all students are now enrolled part-time in the state’s 15 community colleges.

School official also said that the law has been an equity issue, as students of color and other historically under-represented populations have been phased out of the Student Trustee position by the full-time eligibility requirement.

“We are thrilled how our student leaders recognized a critical need and worked with our State legislators addressing the eligibility of our part-time students to serve as Student Trustee,” said John Cox, President of Cape Cod Community College.

“There is a dramatic equity issue that we continue to have across our community colleges by keeping out Student Trustee position tied to being a full-time student in an environment where nearly 70 percent of our students are part-time.”

The amendment now moves to a Conference Committee, comprised of three members from both the State House of Representatives and the Senate to be considered as part of the Senate budget negotiations. 

About Grady Culhane

Grady Culhane is a Cape Cod native currently living in Eastham. He studied media communications at Cape Cod Community College and joined the News Center in 2019.
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