PU outlines E-Board 2012 projects and priorities

I hope everyone is having a great first week of February. Over break, the Union Administrative Office put together an important document for the upcoming year—a layout of Projects and Priorities for 2012. This plan describes the main priorities of the Rensselaer Union in the upcoming year to be carried out by those in the Union Administrative Office. The major priorities that are discussed include connecting students with the faculty and the Cabinet, increasing revenue streams, increasing general student satisfaction, and to regularly evaluate, assess and benchmark our current programs.

The first task, connecting students with the faculty and the Cabinet, is approaching through more publicity of events, reaching out to the faculty and Cabinet, and encouraging them to attend campus-wide events. The more members of campus we can inform about great events hosted by the Union, the more interaction we can get with members of the Cabinet and staff outside the classroom. These are great opportunities to get to know the Cabinet in an informal setting, and to increase student connection with the faculty and staff. The second project, increasing revenue streams is an important issue relating to the budgeting of the Student Activity Fee. A national trend shows bookstore revenues declining, and the Union must investigate new ways to make up for the lost income. Currently, there are no specific plans but it will be a priority to explore solutions and experiment throughout 2012.

The third goal, increasing general student satisfaction, ties into the fourth point of benchmarking. Through regular evaluation and adaptation of our programs, we hope to keep up with popular student trends and incorporate student opinions into our programming. These assessments will demonstrate where our programs are doing well and where they are falling short. We will be doing the National Benchmarking for Student Unions and Student Activities, alternating every other year to see how we compare to other student unions across the country. Hopefully, this will also increase student satisfaction and retention. We are constantly looking for student input, as one of the main goals of the Union is to provide the members of our community with the great student experience.

Before I end my article, I want to inform everyone of an exciting event going on. The Rensselaer Alumni Association is celebrating RPI Spirit Day this Friday, February 3. It encourages alumni and students across the world to put on RPI gear and show school spirit. This is a great opportunity to bring together the amazing network of alumni that come from our amazing institute.

Other great events this weekend include the Pack the Union Spring Activities Fair and the Big Red Freakout! Both will be held on Saturday, February 4. The Activities Fair will be scattered throughout the Union, from 1–4 pm, and is an excellent opportunity to check out all the great clubs and activities supported by the Union. A large variety of clubs and organizations will be showcasing their events and there will be opportunities to check out your interests. The Big Red Freakout! starts at 7:30 pm. Come show your RPI pride!

If you ever have any questions about the Union or the Executive Board, feel free to contact me at pu@rpi.edu. I hope everyone enjoys their week.