By Aleksa Radenovic
Flyers compete for students’ attention on bulletin boards in buildings across Youngstown State University’s campus.
However, student organizations at Youngstown State University are required to get their flyers approved before hanging them up in order to follow the YSU Posting Policy guidelines.
Joy Polkabla Byers, associate vice president of Student Experience, said she encourages all students to read the YSU’s Free Speech Policy and the Posting Policy on the Division of Student Affairs website before posting any flyers.
“In order for students to post their views and thoughts, there are guidelines on how to post on campus in a form of individual events,” Byers said. “You will need to go to the Kilcawley staff desk to have it stamped, it can’t be larger than 11 by 17, have the date of the event, who is posting it and contact.”
Flyers not following these guidelines or violating the Code of Student Conduct have been taken down and reported.
Elsa Khan, vice president of the Student Life Committee for the Student Government Association, witnessed the misuse of campus advertisement and free speech during last year’s SGA campaign season. She reported the incident without stating any names and the flyers were removed.
“Last year, SGA had three different people running for president and vice president and I definitely saw some examples of certain students using their platforms to kind of poke fun at current or future administrations,” Khan said.
Khan said there are strategies to stay within the guidelines of the Posting Policy.
“Try to avoid using negative language because we at Student Life do not tolerate negative campaigning, which I believe is also a bad reflection of your own character,” Khan said.
Caleb Queen, coordinator of Student Involvement, said YSU has specific staff members who monitor the halls and boards that hold the flyers to ensure they’re up to date and not over cluttered.
Queen said he encourages students to report whatever they believe needs to be looked into.
“We would prefer that people report it if they see something, that way we can have the staff look at it, as opposed to students just taking things down themselves,” Queen said. “If something like that happens, we tend to take it to the Dean of Students Office to try and see what was happening.”
Byers said Youngstown State Posting Policy is structured to promote free speech on campus. YSU’s Free Speech Policy can be read and is on the Student Affairs website.
“We value speech across campus and that the individuals have the ability to have an individual thought, expression and assembly as our constitution indicates with the Free Speech Policy,” Byers said.