The Student Finance Board (SFB) voted to fully fund a presentation by conservative politician Phyllis Schlafly on May 2 at its last meeting. SFB also provided funding for the New Jersey Climate March that took place Sunday.
College Republicans was granted $3,070 for its event – $3,000 for the speaker herself and $70 for advertising. The College Republicans called Schlafly an “advocate of conservative principles.”
“We’re trying to continue the process of bringing conservative pundits to speak on campus,” Joseph Hannan, vice chair for the College Republicans, said.
In its request, the Republicans mentioned the upcoming appearance of left-wing historian Howard Zinn. Members said that by bringing Schlafly to campus, both political sides would have their say, and the appearance of these two speakers would spark political debate at the College.
SFB questioned the use of Forcina room 132 for the event, which houses only 150 students, but the College Republicans responded that it would rather fill a small room than have a large room that was only half full.
The issue was raised again when SFB voted on the request but was not deemed a serious problem. “I give them credit for being honest about attendance,” Sean Marotta, representative at-Large, said. “I think it would be worthwhile.”
SFB also granted $1,943 to Water Watch for the New Jersey Climate March.
Water Watch had requested $3,788, some of which was for food and signs, including $1,000 for vegetarian food. No money was awarded for food or signs, but Water Watch was granted $1,943 for staffing costs.
SFB fully funded a request by the White Ribbon Campaign for $1,560 for a program called “Men Can Stop Rape.” The White Ribbon Campaign is a group for both men and women that focuses on men’s relationship to violence.
“Men Can Stop Rape” is an overnight program led by a group of male college students who work with their peers to try to end violence against women. The event is targeted at the College’s male student leaders, such as leaders of fraternities and sports teams.
PRISM received full funding of $504 for the upcoming National Day of Silence.
“It’s a day of protest,” Angel Hernandez, president of PRISM, said. “We stay silent all day in protest to hate crimes, legislation . even people saying things like ‘that’s gay.'”
The requested money would pay for advertising, signs for the rally, gags for the protestors and refreshments for the “Breaking of the Silence Dance” that will be in the Travers/Wolfe dining hall at the end of the day.
SFB also heard a budget appeal from the Inter-Greek Council (IGC). It approved IGC’s requests for pre-October 15 events and recruitment activities, but denied its requests for other publicity and programmatic expenses.
Michael Strom, vice president of Legal and Governmental Affairs for the Student Government Association (SGA), came before SFB to request its support for a higher education rally he is organizing.
“I need to know (the College) is committed to this,” Strom said of the rally, which is scheduled for May 3 at the State House in Trenton. SGA will be providing buses to the event, which will last approximately two hours in the afternoon.
“If I inform the press that this is happening it will look extremely bad if no one shows up,” Strom said.
“I’d like to get at least half the board to go,” Jon Borst, executive director of SFB, said. “I think it would be a good idea for the SFB to show interest in the financing for the school.”