SFB makes votes available to public, funds Senior Week festivities

On Wednesday, the Student Finance Board (SFB) passed a motion to instate a proposal regarding its voting system.

The proposal, made by Steve Viola, SGA liaison to SFB, will require that each board member’s vote be marked down and available to the College community.

Prior to Wednesday’s meeting, each member voted and only the ratio of the vote was recorded; now each member’s name will be called, and each individual vote will be documented.

“(The students) are entitled to know how we vote,” Viola said.

While many members agreed that the proposal will create a more open link between SFB and the College community, others were wary of the repercussions.

“I don’t want a club coming after me if I don’t vote in favor of their request,” Martin Halldorson, senior representative, said.

Despite some disagreement, a motion to make the proposal part of SFB policy was passed 10-5, and was immediately put into effect.

SFB also passed a motion to fund $10,000 to the Student Government Association (SGA) senior class council’s annual Senior Week, a four-day event after finals that unites the senior class one last time.

In past years, SFB has funded up to $15,000 toward Senior Week. The goal is to eventually fund the event for $5,600, which would be the dollar amount left over if approximately each student who attends the College contributed $1.

This year’s senior class council has contributed more of its own funding to the event and is providing more Senior Night/Senior Week activities that are less centered on alcohol than in the past to accommodate students who do not wish to drink.

The effort put forth by the council impressed the board, which passed a motion 13-1-1 to fund $10,000 for Senior Week, leaving seniors to contribute only a few extra dollars to the current $145 ticket cost.

“We want to keep the ticket price as low as possible for seniors,” Dave Wetzel, treasurer of the senior class council, said.

“They seemed really happy about the decision,” Julia Pratt, executive director of SFB, said, citing that the council was probably expecting to receive only the $5,600.

The International Studies Club requested $3,479 for 16 of its members to participate in a regional Model U.N. conference at the University of Pennsylvania, again raising issues of how SFB should tackle conference requests.

Many board members felt that this conference, unlike others SFB has seen this year, needed more than the five attendees SFB usually funds. The nature of Model U.N., they said, requires more students to participate than other conferences.

Ultimately the board passed a motion 8-6-1 to fund $800 ($50 a person), staying consistent with its past decisions regarding conference requests.

The decision may inhibit the organization from attending the conference since each attendee will have to personally contribute an additional $170.

Above all, the board stressed the importance of being fair for each conference request.

“We just can’t please everybody all the time,” Pratt said.

Prism also requested funding for its two events, “Living and Loving in a World with AIDS,” a program as part of AIDS Awareness Week, and its Gay Wedding Project.

The board passed motions 13-1-1 and 12-2-1 to fully fund both events for $1,500 and $168 respectively, with the stipulation that Prism will book a larger venue for its first program. Prism has currently booked Cromwell Hall main lounge.

The Women’s Center also requested $5,260 to host four speakers in a lecture/question and answer program on Third Wave Feminism. Subtracting the $20 requested for gifts for the lecture’s speakers and requesting that Women’s Center book a bigger venue than the current location, the New Library Auditorium, SFB passed a motion 14-1 to contribute $5,240 to the event.

The College Democrats requested $128 for candles, candle holders and hot chocolate for its Iraq War protest and vigil. The motion to fully fund the event passed 13-1-1.

Voice of Hope, the College’s a cappella singing group, made two funding requests, asking for $80 to provide dinner to a guest group who will be attending the College’s Winter Concert, as well as $32 in travel expenses for the organization to perform at Bryn Mawr College.

The board passed a motion 13-1-1 to give the organization $60 to provide food. A second motion was passed 15-0 to fund the group’s travel expenses.