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The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Student Government passes resolution to support WhatsApp, FaceTime access on campus Wi-Fi

Allison Campbell
Student Government Assocation senators raise their hands as part of an informal vote during the Senate meeting on Dec. 6. During the session, senators passed a resolution that would encourage WhatsApp and Facetime to be available on campus Wi-Fi.

Editor’s note: This story previously incorrectly identified the author of the bill as former Sen. Ayleen Escobedo. The necessary corrections have since been made.

The Student Government Association (SGA) passed a resolution during Wednesday’s Senate meeting to support removing communication barriers among international students.

According to the Communication Accessibility for International Students resolution, many international students use WhatsApp and FaceTime to “communicate amongst each other and with their support circle,” but these apps have been restricted on campus Wi-Fi.

When international students first arrive in the United States, some do not have a phone number and instead use WhatsApp, as it does not require a phone number. 

Director of Legislative Affairs and Policy Valeria Paunetto, the author of the resolution, said at the last meeting on Nov. 15 that removing restrictions on these apps would make “one less barrier that (international students) have to go through.”

Whereas a bill would elicit action, a resolution is a formal statement that the Student Senate is voicing support for.

Engineering Sen. Matthew Phan and International Sen. Abraham Tsuma spoke in affirmation of the resolution.

“Personally, I had to go to McDonald’s all the time to access WhatsApp, and if we can pass this bill and make sure that students have the ability to have access to this app, it will do a huge favor to the international students,” Tsuma said. 

Tsuma said he needed to talk with people “back home” about his school fees and was not able to due to the restriction of WhatsApp on campus Wi-Fi. 

The resolution passed with 29 in favor, zero not in favor and one abstention.

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About the Contributors
Loren Amelunke, Reporter
Loren Amelunke is a first-year reporter for The Sunflower. She is a sophomore at Wichita State, currently pursuing a psychology major. She loves to write poetry and hopes to publish a poetry book in the near future.
Allison Campbell, News Editor
Allison Campbell is one of the news editors for The Sunflower. Campbell is a junior pursuing a journalism and media production degree with a minor in English. Campbell hopes to pursue a career in writing or editing after graduation. They use any pronouns.

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