Student Government president Christina Kopka presented awards to three employees at the College at the SG meeting on Wednesday, April 24. Students were given the opportunity to nominate members of the College staff, faculty and administration to receive their respective awards for the year. Erica Kalinowski, coordinator of student services for the School of Business, Daryl Fair, a political science professor, and Debra Kelly, director of the career center, were awarded the 2013 Student Government Outstanding Staff, Faculty and Administrator awards, respectively.
Ewing councilman Kevin Baxter visited and discussed the relationship between the College and the Ewing community and how a positive relationship can be fostered. He mentioned the success they have seen with the Town Gown meetings, which bring forth new ideas for improving the relations between College students and Ewing neighbors.
“I understand you are students, but you also want to be community-minded, so to speak. Just make sure that you help your neighbor, you know. Pay it forward,” Baxter said. “And I believe if each one teaches one and each one helps one we will all be a better community.”
A bill sponsored by the governmental affairs committee was presented and voted on at the meeting. The bill was proposed to help the freshman class council and redesigned the way in which the freshman class council representatives would be appointed. The freshman class would select 10 class representatives to serve as the class council for six weeks. During this time, the 10 representatives would be guided by their advisor to help them with planning, fundraising and becoming familiar with SG.
“Basically, what we’ve noticed over the years, and I think many people in this room would agree, is that the freshman class councils often struggle because a lot of times you are adjusting to college and at the same time you are taking on these huge responsibilities,” vice president of governmental affairs Devin Dimmig said.
Some confusion arose during the discussion regarding how the class officer positions would be elected. It was clarified that any student could run for one of the 10 class council representative spots. After the six weeks, the SG president will accept applications from the 10 representatives for the positions. Four representatives will be selected by the SG president for the spots of class president, vice president, secretary and treasurer, according to the bill.
Although it was stated that this would just be a pilot program for now, SG debated the bill extensively.
“As somebody who was on freshman class council my freshman year, it is extremely difficult when you are a freshman, not knowing what you are supposed to do within Student Government,” vice president for student services Annie Montero said. “I think this is one way we can address it having spent a lot of time talking about possible solutions, this is probably the best one we have come up with.”
“Frankly, I just don’t see the need for this bill,” senator of the school of humanities and social sciences Kenneth Murphy said. “People have sighted that freshmen have difficulty in programming early on, but in my four years here, each freshman class council has at least met expectations, if not exceeded them … The freshman class is an autonomous unit, and part of choosing their leadership helps them create their own identity as a class … I believe that those first six weeks that they are in power, will be a dogfight. And I believe that they will be competing with each other rather than cooperating.”
While it was noted that if the bill was voted down, revisions could be made and presented to SG again, the bill was passed with a 40 to 11 vote.