Updates from SGA: November 7th

By: Ava Gonzalez

Photos: Marymount Student Government Association

Every other Thursday, the Student Government Association hosts a public meeting. Last week, there were some exciting guest speakers and updates!

Brooke Berry from the Title IX Office was invited by the SGA President to inform student leaders of how to report sexual assaults and violence on campus. She led a Kahoot! game, answered questions, and suggested partnering with the student government on an educational campaign.

Susan Boyd of Residence Life was also a guest speaker, and opened the floor for questions and comments from the senate. 

Many students contacted Residence Life about concerns of cleanliness in Rowley Hall. They are currently working to develop a new housekeeping schedule, so the bathrooms could be cleaned more frequently.  Additionally, to address the rising cost of on-campus housing, Residence Life is considering a new grant. This would increase as a student progresses through their degree. 

Boyd noted that Nursing students expressed an interest in a Living Learning Community on campus, which Residence Life will be looking into. 

Berg Hall will no longer continue to be used as housing on campus. Gerard will not be available to students as a dorm hall, as they are exploring long-term renovation plans. Boyd was happy to report that there was a significant increase in Summer Interns leasing from Marymount. 100 students were living on campus during summer 2019, as compared to only 25 in 2018. 

As there are still vacancies at the Rixey, Residence Life is considering short-term leases and other agreements to fill the empty rooms.  Another potential initiative for providing stability to students would be a two-year Rixey lease. Rising Juniors would be guaranteed a specific room for 2 whole years, including the summer semester. The two major benefits of this type of lease would be that 1) students would not need to move their belongings out for the summer, and 2) the housing payment would be guaranteed not to rise. This initiative is not yet finalized. 

The Treasurer’s Report detailed the approved requests from additional club funding. Several clubs, including CAB, Blue Crew, and Art Club, submitted requests. All were approved. 

During the public discussion section, College Democrats President Justin Srsic delivered a letter to SGA President Sarah McDonald and the Senate. It was addressed to Dr. Johnson, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, regarding changes to student club requirements. As of this semester, clubs are required to have a faculty or staff chaperone for certain types of off-campus events. 

For Open Senate Business, there were two resolutions or changes to bylaws. SGA will be seeking a non-voting member to manage social media and outreach. Additionally, the duties of the Attorney General will be shifted to the Chief Justice, as they did not have anyone to fill the Attorney General’s vacancy. 

The President’s Report included several updates from Sarah McDonald. She met with the Provost, Dr. El-Rewini, about adding a required section to class syllabi. This addition would include the information on how to process official complaints about faculty members. 

The Task Force for the Arts also met, where they brainstormed many ways to increase art awareness on campus. The list included things like new murals, music practice rooms, and potential ways to sell student art on campus. 

McDonald and several senators have met with Susan Boyd and Upendra Malani for potential solutions for parking at Ballston. 

SGA also will be enforcing new regulations for senators. SGA Senators, representing the classes, must acquire at least 5 inputs to a weekly survey each week. McDonald explained, that senators are intended to represent the student body. By soliciting feedback from at least 5 students per week, they are more likely to represent the feelings of the student body accurately. 

The Academic Affairs committee is working on events such as Coffee with Professors, and waiting for more information regarding future GRE/LSAT/MCAT prep session. 

The Committee of Affordability and Financial Affairs is working with fashion students to develop a “SaintsWill”. These student run thrift stores are popping up at schools all over the country, and provide a local solution to waste clothing. 

The committee for Inclusion and Transparency are working on a future event regarding Title IX.

Sustainability and University Services are working on some issues regarding Meatless Monday in the Dining Hall. Additionally, they are working to make support for military students and those on the GI Bill more accessible. The next Student Government meeting will be on December 5th, at 9pm, in the Gomatos Reading Room of the Reinsch Library. More information can be found on Engage.

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