Senate Briefs (4/18)

We were unable to put the Senate Briefs in the last week's printed version. Please visit our website if you would like to read them:

Same Ol’ Story

Continuing the tradition of his predecessor, next year’s ASPC President Nate Brown ‘12 showed up late to his first Senate meeting after being elected. His namesake, Environmental Affairs Commissioner Nate Wilairat ‘11, reported to the Senate on the Facebook group petitioning to turn the hammer throw field into part of the Organic Farm. Wilairat wanted “to clarify a few things before people start getting outraged,” and explained that the point of the petition is to show that there are students who are interested in considering alterative uses for the space, not to advocate that we kick out athletics without finding them a suitable alternative or replacement field. Just as Wilairat was finishing up, South Campus Representative Ian Gallogly ‘13 rolled up outside the meeting on his longboard and slipped on the wet concrete. The Senate erupted in laughter as Gallogly entered, leaving current ASPC President Stephanie Almeida ‘11 displeased and banging her gavel in anger. Senior Class President Meredith Willis ‘11 aptly added, “You’re watching your empire crumble, Stephanie.”

Joseph Long > OCL

For the third time this semester, Long exited the Senate meeting to a round of applause and a rare smile from Associate Dean of Students Neil Gerard. What garnered that acclaim was Long's presentation of a new room reviews website, “which, despite not being public yet, people have started using,” Long told Senate. The Room Review site, discussed on and off for two years now, offers students the ability to browse housing options, search for rooms based on certain specifications (particular dorms, room size, etc), and review rooms. The site even has maps and specs of both new dorms—Sontag and Building B—which OCL has not put up on the Pomona College website yet. Several Senators were concerned that incoming first-years might complain about their rooms before getting to campus and create a big scene, but Long assured them that he could easily cut out incoming first-years until they got to campus. Others worried that the maps may not accurately reflect the most up-to-date friendship suite locations or substance-free rooms. At least this website even exists, and let's all realize that Long can easily add a disclaimer on the lead-in page saying that it is not official College content.

I’m Looking at YOU, Frank Langan

Next, Willis discussed a few ideas for the Senior Class Project. Her first idea was to do a Seniors-Helping-Seniors Day with a few senior citizen homes in the village, since, “you know, we’re all getting old,” as she put it. The Senior Class Committee is also considering hosting a Senior Class event to write letters to middle schoolers to encourage them to go to college, or, in Willis’s words, “to keep on keeping on.” Lastly, Willis reported that the Senior Class Gift has received donations from around 50 percent of the class, which is higher than this time last year. She quickly added, “So if you haven’t given, Frank Langan, you should probably give.” This year, alumni giving is at its lowest level in a while, “so it’s really important that people give a dollar, Frank Langan.” Every dollar (up to $5) that seniors put toward the gift will be matched by Dean Feldblum's office, so make sure you give at least a dollar, Frank Langan.

The Best Elections Commissioner Ever

Lastly, ASPC Elections Commissioner Aerienne Russell ‘12 visited the Senate to talk about how the election process could be improved in the future. First, she noted that there was some confusion about candidates’ names on the ballot. Some candidates go by something other than their legal names, so if someone wants to be called “Starfish 100,” she said, they need to let the elections commissioner know in advance. After a few other brief discussions, the Senate moved onto a conversation about whether or not ASPC-funded organizations are allowed to send out e-mails endorsing candidates and explicitly telling members of a group who to vote for. This, of course, refers to the e-mail sent by a member of Empowered Latinos in Action (ELA) and passed along to several different ASPC-funded groups on campus. After a heated debate, a subcommittee was formed to draft language on the matter. Let’s hope this one doesn’t get dissolved like all the other Senate subcommittees so that this isn’t an issue in the future.

-Jeff Levere ‘12

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