Create a textbook exchange program
Textbook prices are on the rise nationwide, and some students pay more than $300 for textbooks each semester. We will partner with the university to create a program that allows students to exchange textbooks for popular introductory courses. The systems currently in place require students to pay high fees, and having a university sponsored resource will allow students to get textbooks they need at comparatively cheaper rates.
Expand paid career-oriented opportunities on campus
As many undergraduates know, college students need plenty of experience to enter the workforce after leaving the Forty Acres. While on campus, most students work jobs that help pay for their college expenses, not ones that advance their career interests. We want to fund campus research grants through Student Government to expand career-related work opportunities for our fellow longhorns. This will maintain and improve our standing as a Public Research Institution, connect students to networking opportunities with professors on campus, and increase student connections to the campus environment.
Work with apartment complexes to allow non-conventional guarantor forms
Students from low and middle income families can struggle to secure leases in neighborhoods close to campus because of their family’s’ financial standing. However, these same students often have large financial assets (loans, scholarships, grants etc.) which guarantee that they can cover their housing expenses. Students should be able to utilize these funds as a guaranty for their lease. We will work with apartment complexes to give students this option and thus give them more freedom in choosing where they want to live.
Create an online database with student housing options available in Austin
Austin has a diverse market of houses, apartments, and condos, but a recurring complaint of students is finding affordable housing. Currently, there is no comprehensive way to search for the place that’s right for you. Unlike many other Tier 1 Universities, UT is not involved in off-campus housing. We aim to change that – The University should work with companies in West Campus and Riverside to create a searchable database for students to shop around for their next housing location. This website would allow students to tailor their search to their budget and other preferences like distance from campus, amenities, and type of residence.