SGA passes bill to place T numbers on students’ Eagle Cards

In the Oct. 27 SGA meeting, a bill was passed which will give new students the ability to have their T number on their Eagle Cards.

This bill was proposed by Freshman Senator Dylan Miller after he noticed how many students did not know their T numbers while trying to pick up S.O.L.O. tickets.

“They spent a lot of time standing on the sides or in the corners of our office trying to go through their iLearn looking for their T numbers,” Miller said. “They weren’t able to find them, and I figured this would actually be a lot easier.”

The bill includes the option for students to refuse having their T number on their Eagle Card.

Miller said he received feedback from this bill saying the only real safety concern if someone knew your T number would be if teachers sent out grades by T number in a mass email, for instance. Others said they simply wouldn’t feel safe with their T number on their Eagle Card, Miller said.

Senators discussed these potential security concerns, but SGA Secretary Savannah Savage noted that other major universities include students’ ID numbers on their cards, so there must not be any major safety problems.

“We had our ID numbers on our cards,” said Jason Bennett, a 2013 graduate from the University of Tennessee at Martin. “We would use that number to log in to the website portal and some professors would want us to provide it on our assignments and exams. I didn’t have any safety concerns or knew of any.”

The bill will only apply to new students who are getting Eagle Cards for the first time, starting in Fall 2016. Current students would have to pay the standard $10 fee to get a replacement card if they wanted their T number on their card.

Freshman mechanical engineering major Austin Monroe said he doesn’t care to get a new Eagle Card with his T number included.

“It would have helped at the start of the year,” Monroe said, “but a couple weeks into the year, I naturally memorized it. I think the idea is good, but it doesn’t work for me personally.”

“Our goal in SGA is to provide for the students, and be a voice for the students,” Miller said. “I figured we might as well make two groups of students happy, rather than just one.”

For Tech to provide new Eagle Cards to all current students, it would cost the university $109,000, so the bill is not requiring Tech to provide new cards.