Nathan A. Zimmerman –
My fellow students:
The full Student Senate held its latest meeting Thursday, November 13. This was a different format of a meeting as we met at 8pm in the Fairfield Library in Lincoln Hall. Public Relations Chair Noah Yantis requested to do pictures before the full Student Senate met in Tanner Library. However, before pictures were taken, an emergency meeting was called to order by President Nava in order to vote to confirm Lauren Mense to fill a vacancy within the Class of 2017.
Call to order and roll call was concluded and committee reports began after the previous meeting minutes and the evening’s agenda was approved. The executive board gave their reports and then the committee reports began. The Student Life Committee discussed some situations with Chartwells; these included name changes for the food venues, the supply of gluten- and lactose-free foods, and the survey for food in the grill next semester. Other issues the Student Life Committee is working on are the issues of the Wi-Fi in Greene and half of certain floors, and the administration’s thoughts on trying to push back or move forward the renovations for the cafeteria. The committee does not agree and thinks that not only should the renovations happen with what has already been decided, but that Chartwells be accountable for everything they promised in the contract. President Nava gave an assignment to the Student Life Committee to put a stop to the car alarm that goes off in Mundinger/Greene lot every night, of which Student Senate has received numerous complaints.
The Organizational Outreach Committee discussed plans of implementing Student Leader of the Month; this will entail creating a survey which will then be sent through the campus announcement system for students to vote on, in which the leader with the most votes will receive an award. Also, the OOC will be partnering with The Rambler and featuring student organizations in it. The OOC will be in charge of the Student Senate/SAB Holiday Dinner with President Farley, as well as the “Farley Forum” at the beginning of the next semester.
Public Relations reported the progress of Staff/Professor of the Month as well as its plans to implement the Senate Spotlight by the end of the month. Public Relations members will each be in charge of a social media account and will have to report the number of followers and any interactions during the committee meeting. The bullying and hazing that occurs through Yik Yak was also discussed which led to Resolution 14-17.
The Finance Committee decided to go ahead and distribute allocations for this next period of the semester. However, after this the committee members will each be assigned a number of organizations to effectively communicate the new allocation process with organization leaders. This would effectively “grandfather in” the new allocation system. The constitution ad-hoc committee will be turned into an attendance policy ad-hoc committee upon approval of the proposed amendments, which is discussed in one of the following resolutions. The Student Payment Committee is still making discussions on the question of paying the student leaders of Student Activities Board and Student Senate. The Class Chairs had nothing to reports at this time.
As part of the advisor reports, Dean Carlson explained how the sexual assault policy and report sheets are on the Illinois College website located under “Quick Links” and then titled Sexual Misconduct. There will also be a Title IX meeting to further discuss these and other issues related to gender. The college also is in the process of getting reaccredited so be sure to watch for updates on that process! Professor Nahlik discussed registration and offered words of encouragement for us to stay on top of our studies.
During “Lobby Your Senate,” Senators expressed desire for a hot beverage machine in the grill at night. Some issues questioned were the mascot debate, some posters appearing in dorms, food service (opening the grill during lunch, quality of food, employee conduct, and labeling), and residential life (Wi-Fi struggles, and international students situation for the class breaks). The alcohol policy was discussed in Old Business and there will be future meetings with Judy Tonry, administration, members of the athletic department, and student leaders to see what can be done to improve the policy.
There were four new resolutions presented in New Business. The first is the Student Senate’s official stance on the social media app “Yik Yak.” It was passed by a majority and essentially states that the Student Senate strongly condemns using derogatory or offensive language on the app and encourages other students to take the initiative to “down vote” such language as it occurs. Resolution 14-18 gave the OOC the ability to help the Center of Student Involvement by reaching out to the organizations personally and asking for any updated Constitutions to be sent to the CSI. Resolution 14-19 stated the recommendations the constitutional ad-hoc committee has to offer and that the recommendations are voted on at the next full Student Senate meeting. The final resolution, Resolution 14-20, was presented by the Finance Committee and entailed their suggestions for the next quarter of allocations. It was passed by majority approval. After an explanation of the Executive Orders of Senate expenses, the Senate adjourned.
Nathan A. Zimmerman, from Mt. Sterling, Illinois, is a junior majoring in Finance and Economics with a minor in Political Science. Nathan is the Organizational Outreach Chair of the Student Senate, the President of the Warren O. Billhartz Investment Club, as well as an active member of Enactus. Nathan is a features and opinions writer for The Rambler.