Club food policy successfully appealed

PRESIDENT OF THE GAME DEVELOPMENT CLUB SPENCER JOHNSON '16 STATES why they should be able to access their reception fund to receive food.

This week’s Executive Board meeting began with President of the Union Erin Amarello ’15 welcoming the newest members of the E-Board, Donna Grace Moleta ’18 and coterminal student Courtney Lang ’14.

First on the agenda was food budgeting for clubs. Previously the food budget was intended to be used by clubs during major club meetings, but some clubs had been using it for smaller officer meetings instead of entire club events. Last year during budgeting, the E-Board decided that food money could be used once per semester for all clubs except cultural clubs, which could use food money for special events only. Former President of the Union Gretchen Sileo ’14 would not hear any appeals. An outcry resulted among some clubs, which prompted the E-Board to discuss the issue more this semester. The E-Board discussed how it should change the rules so that clubs hosting multiple events a semester could be reimbursed for purchased food. A criteria system was suggested to help determine which events would qualify for reimbursement. Some of the mentioned criteria included number in attendance and duration of the event, including whether or not members could leave for food. E-Board member Andrew Sudano ’17 said “There are many clubs that deserve food in order to promote themselves as a club.” Sudano also said he felt that the E-Board’s job was to help clubs be as successful as possible. However, due to the wide variety of clubs at RPI, some E-Board members thought a blanket statement would not be an elegant solution to the problem and would rather deal with food purchases on a case-by-case basis. No motion was passed on the subject, but clubs now have the option to appeal the food restriction.

Next, Spencer Johnson ’16 and Mark Raducy ’16 of the Game Development Club presented a proposal to buy food for four club events over the year. The club usually holds three Game Jams and one other special event per semester. Game Jam is an event that lasts up to 24 hours where developers design and code a video game. Some people stay for the entire 24 hours without leaving to get food. Johnson said that at the end of the event, it would be nice for them to have “something so [the participants] feel like they’re not dead.” The club made the point that these events are not weekly meetings. They usually have around 40 members and non-members attending, including some people from the game industry. In their first motion of the evening, the E-Board unanimously approved the Games Development Club to access the reception fund for special events.

Discussion then turned to graduate student Josh Plottel, Thomas Hartmann ’15, and Nick Boni ’16, all members of the Astrophysical Society. They requested that vans be provided for transportation to star parties sponsored by the Albany Area Amateur Astronomers. The events are held monthly at Grafton Lakes State Park. Since the park is 15 miles from RPI and most club members do not have cars, the E-Board agreed in a 14-0-0 vote to cover 40 percent of the cost of vans and gas for two star parties per semester.

Last on the agenda was the president’s report. Colton Fisher ’15 was approved as the Marketing, Advertising, and Publications chairman in a 13-0-1 vote. E-Board members were reminded also of the Association of College Unions International conference and of the Grand Marshal/PU brunch. The meeting concluded with a closed session on the Class Council Task Force.