On February 7, Grand Marshal Paul Ilori ‘17 opened the Student Senate with committee reports. Those included new meeting times for Senate committees, examining the feasibility of making career fair day an excused absence for students, creating new surveys on communications related issues and cheating, and inviting more companies to the career fair for graduates of the School of Science.
The Student Life Committee has also scheduled a meeting with both Vice President for Student Life Frank E. Ross III and Dean of Students Travis Apgar in order to discuss varying topics including Greek policy, the independent SPAM replacement organization, and the preferred names policy. Student Life Committee Chairperson Justin Etzine ‘18 addressed the delay in the preferred names policy implementation by stating that the registrar’s office is currently undergoing staff changes, making it difficult to implement the policy.
The Senate then continued with constituent reports, beginning with Thomas Alappat ‘17, the Executive Board liaison to the Senate, who announced the approval of a new club affiliated with Makerspace that wishes to create a new space where students can go to garner experience with 3D printers and manufacturing mechanisms. Alappat also reported that a starter budget was approved for the Mandarin Club, with the goal of allowing Mandarin-speaking individuals to meet and immerse themselves in the Mandarin language. Those who do not speak Mandarin, however, are also welcome to attend.
Panhellenic Council Senator Jennie Miller ‘19 continued by announcing that the Panhellenic Council will soon begin preliminary investigations in bringing a new sorority chapter to Rensselaer’s campus. No timeline was given, but Miller stated that an exploratory council is in the midst of being created to explore if it would be beneficial to bring a new sorority chapter to campus.
Following constituent reports, the Senate moved to approve a member to the Rules and Elections Committee, Caleb Caraway ‘19, which passed 21-0-0. Rules and Elections Committee Chairperson David Raab ‘19 then presented the new GM Week handbook, which was approved 20-0-1. During a discussion surrounding the handbook, Senator Sidney Kochman ‘19 remarked on the particular wording of the document regarding the extended sign policy which allowed for political content to be posted around campus during the elections. Kochman recommended that the wording be changed to election-related material, and Raab agreed to the changes.