Student Government Senate Meeting and Projects Update

Kim Barr, Fahad Ashraf and Marlene Geerinck (left)

The Kane Forum, Edward R. Leahy Jr. Hall, was the setting for Student Government’s third meeting of the semester on Friday, March 1st, 2019. Starting at 3:15 p.m., Senate had multiple guests attend the meeting, addressing topics such as the academic calendar and digitizing services offered at the Weinberg Memorial Library. 

Senate Forum

Senators Jacob Myers and Peter Zabiegala (right)

Each meeting, Student Government invites guests to discuss topics, ideas, and proposals that various departments at the University are working on through a forum discussion.

Academic Calendar 2020-2021

Senate had the pleasure of welcoming Dr. Gingerich, Provost/Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs, who discussed the 2020-2021 academic calendar, noting that changes in the calendar would not have much of an impact to on-campus students, but the difficulty lies in scheduling holidays amidst two 16-week semesters. Senate voiced their concerns and comments regarding the current calendar, noting some hardship in ending fall semester to immediately begin intersession classes.

Digitizing Services at the Weinberg Memorial Library

Senate met with Colleen Fay, a digital services librarian at the Weinberg Memorial Library, who discussed the services available to students such as the digital preservation of scholastic work, important documents, and scholarly research. Senate learned that preserved files are subsequently stored via an online server and can be made available to the public. Senate is specifically interested in digitizing the Student Government Binders that contain past meeting information, bills, club charters etc., and will be working with the library to digitally preserve t hese documents.

Royal Ride

Senate discussed the Royal Ride, a service provided through University Police that transports students on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights as well as providing medical transportation to on-campus sites. Senate specifically discussed the possibility of modifying the way in which the Royal Ride is called upon to pick up students, suggesting alternatives to the use of Twitter.

Student Government Logo

Student Government discussed two prototypes one of which will serve as a logo for Student Government, and in the upcoming weeks, Student Government will formally approve one of the prototypes for official use.

New Business

Matt Coughlin and Maddie Sunday (left)

This past week, Student Government met with the Student Nurses Association to discuss the possibility of receiving New Initiative Funding for an on-campus nursing development conference. Amy Kasier, Vice President of the Student Nurses Association, met with Senate to discuss the conference, which will be held on April 14th, as well as the items that the association is requesting funding for. Senate unanimously passed the New Initiative Funding Bill, pending future approvals.  

Executive Reports

Senators Sela Fine, Susan Neggia, and Joe Fullam (right)

Vice President Fahad Ashraf informed Senate that members of the executive team will continue work on a document that will improve students’ learning environment through possible guidelines formalizing classroom procedures. VP Ashraf also noted that Student Government will be present at Preview Day on March 23rd and is excited to meet future Royals. President Matthew Coughlin continued Executive Reports by providing Senate with updates on the Board of Trustees Meetings that he attended, especially noting that a new major, Business Analytics, will be added to the Kania School of Management. In addition, President Coughlin informed Senate that UPD will be updating the Mulberry crosswalks with enhanced detection of pedestrians. In addition, Chief of Staff Barr updated Senate on the election timeline, while Executive Treasurer Nonnenmacher informed Senate of an upcoming Student Government event that will be held in the beginning of April, allowing students to meet with members of Student Government. Finally, Director of Technology Jack Prendergast informed Senate of an LSC study room project that he will be working on with the Technology and Support Center in the upcoming months, enabling students to easily determine if there are any study rooms available.

Senate Committee Reports

The Academic and Scholastic Affairs Committee informed Senate that members will partner with Dir. of Technology Prendergast in working on the study room project as well as drafting a possible resolution that addresses camping out in LSC study rooms.

The Appropriations and Student Transitions Committee noted work on Contingency Funding, which would replace New Initiative Funding, making funds more accessible to clubs and possibly individuals on campus.

The Athletics and Programming Committee informed Senate that planning for the spring Street Sweep, which will be held on April 13th, has begun.

Campus Life and Dining Services informed Senate that members will be working on determining whether the University and Dining Services would be open to using Ozzi Boxes, reusable food containers that would eliminate the waste produced by plastic and paper products. The committee will be meeting with an Ozzi Representative in the upcoming weeks to determine feasibility.

Finally, the Safety, Justice, and Service Committee met with Chief Bergmann to discuss parking bans as well as a new emergency notification system that would push notifications to campus TVs as well as to on-campus visitors.

As demonstrated by the packed meeting, Student Government is busy with various projects and initiatives. If any questions arise with respect to what Student Government is working on, or if you have any suggestions or interest in the current work of Student Government, please stop by the Student Government office, TDC Forum! As always, follow Student Government on Twitter and Instagram @uofssg to receive additional updates.

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