Wisconsin State Statute 36.09(5)
“The students of each institution or campus subject to the responsibilities and powers of the board, the president, the chancellor, and the faculty shall have the primary responsibility for advising the chancellor regarding the formulation and review of policies concerning student life, services, and interests. Students in consultation with the chancellor and subject to the final confirmation of the board shall have the responsibility for the disposition of those student fees which constitute substantial support for campus student activities. The students of each institution or campus shall have the right to organize themselves in a manner they determine and to select their representatives to participate in institutional governance.”
“Shared Governance” is the idea that decisions made regarding the University should be arrived at in a collaborative fashion that puts the primary responsibility for decision making in the hands of those most affected by such decisions. Wisconsin is unique in that state law requires the University to be governed in this shared manner, giving students direct power to jointly run the University with Administration, Faculty, Academic Staff, and University Staff. Statute 36.09(5) allows students the ability to participate in the administration of the University. One of the most important ways students at Madison can accomplish this is to hold a position on a student-faculty committee. These committees are key to running the University, and the positions give students a chance to mold this University to the needs of Students.