By Joe Wilson

Alex Reynolds, U of L’s Services Vice President

Few actually get to see the work of the Student Government Association’s Top 4 beyond those big banners that drape the SAC. In September, we talked with Executive President Dorian Brown and Vice President Katie Hayden about their outlook at the beginning of the semester but this week, Services Vice President Alex Reynolds sat down with The Louisville Cardinal to talk about both his role and the upcoming initiatives in the Student Government Association.

“I do act as a megaphone for students in a way, where I’m able to share their perspectives to the administrators, and they’ll listen actually,” he said. Reynolds explained that the student government can’t work well without input from students, so his main focuses concern the issues of campus housing, dining, and security.

Help with Leases and Lunches

Reynolds could recount multiple stories of students who struggled with financial hardships and strict housing leases, so he’s worked to reform housing agreements.

Reynolds successfully advocated for a subleasing option for students and greater leniency for those with financial difficulties. Previously, students would face thousands of dollars in cancellation fees and red tape if they decided to cancel just five days after they chose their room, as per housing policy. “Students in difficult financial situations can generally get out of their lease easier, so that’s really huge. But we’ve worked to make it so students who take on a lease and end up not wanting it can sublease now,” he said.

Additionally, Reynolds explained he wants to see changes to U of L’s dining options to give students more choice quality.

“Students want options that are healthy, fast, and also efficient—no long wait lines or anything like that,” he said. 

In particular, Reynolds said he wants to see changes to The MarketPlace. When it was announced on August 8th that The MarketPlace reduced its hours to 10 A.M. to 5 P.M., Reynolds recognized that that further limits flexibility for students. He added the new model for the Marketplace resembles “a second Ville Grille”, which may not appeal to most students.

Addressing Slow Transportation

The free campus transportation service, “Cardinal Cruiser” is popular among students, but there are currently only a few cars in service, contributing to inconsistent wait times. Reynolds explained the University of Kentucky partners with the ride-share service Uber to provide students with free rides on the weekends, and he’s advocating for U of L to create a similar supplementary program with the Cruisers.

“We’re having conversations with ride-sharing services like Lyft, but the main thing we’re just trying to see is what we can do to improve overall transportation on campus, the efficiency of those transportation services, and student safety,” he said, stressing that those conversations are still in the early stages.

The Top 4

By nature of being one of the Top 4 officers, Reynolds spends a lot of time with the other executives—Student Body President Dorian Brown, Executive Vice President Katie Hayden, and Academic Vice President Bryson Sebastian.

“We’re like best friends, really. This is probably the most driven group of people that I’ve ever seen,” he said. “People are in here, in this office way past midnight usually. Just getting work done honestly. We have a lot of fun together.”

He described that all 4 agree to provide full transparency and consistency as SGA executive officers. “Usually, when students walk by the SGA office, it’ll be pitch black. Closed. Inconsistent hours. But now,” he said, “students can just walk in, ask questions. They can give their inputs.” Their office, located on the third floor of the SAC, is open from 10 A.M. to 4 P.M. Monday through Friday. 

Reynolds-a junior Political Science major- said he currently has no concrete plans to run for an SGA position next year.

“I’ve just been so focused on what I’m doing. But, it would be really tough to leave SGA in my senior year because I just care so much about it. I feel like there’s more work to be done.”

File Photo // U of L SGA //