The following covers the meeting on Sept. 19.
CAMPUS CLIMATE CHECK
Sophomore senator Mia Quintanilla related negative feedback that she had received from students who had attended the sexual assault speaker last Wednesday. Quintanilla worried that the speaker made light of a serious topic in attempting to be relatable. Advisor David Tuttle, dean of students, voiced that he thought the speaker — who was from an organization that Trinity had not worked with before — was effective, pointing out that 40–60 students signed up for the Coalition for Respect following the speaker. Chief of staff Cecelia Turkewitz, who attended the event, agreed with Quintanilla. Tuttle disagreed that the speaker made light of sexual assault and suggested that students email him directly to give feedback on the speaker.
Senior senator Julia Shults, chair of the sustainability committee, recounted her meeting with Sharon Curry, sustainability coordinator, regarding providing clear trash bags for students in City Vista in order to encourage students to recycle.
GRADUATION CEREMONY STRUCTURE CHANGE
President Amulya Deva, on behalf of a committee of administrators who are trying to find an alternative format for the graduation ceremony, solicited feedback from SGA on a proposed plan. Under the proposed plan, graduation would be split in two parts. The first would have limited seating and speeches. Students would then split into disciplines to walk and receive their diplomas, which would reduce the length of the ceremony and the limit on the amount of guests students can bring to watch them receive their diploma. All of the disciplines would walk at the same time, so double majors would have to pick.
Senior senator Reese Carlos raised concerns over what would happen if two members of the same family were graduating at the same time in different walking ceremonies. Sophomore senator Nick Pereida pointed out that there would be disparities in walking location. Senior senator Sam Afshari spoke for the sentimental value of walking at Laurie and being amongst all of your peers. Junior senator Ben Gonzalez asked how everyone would shake President Danny Anderson’s hand. Deva said that students would instead shake hands with department chairs or someone else important.
Junior senator Simone Washington suggested an off-campus venue. Quintanilla pointed out that this would cost money, and that there is sentimental value in graduating at Trinity and taking photos. Senior senator Chris Fanick suggested holding the ceremony on the football field. Deva said that she suggested this to the committee and that they immediately rejected the idea. Deva encouraged SGA to email her further feedback.
150TH ANNIVERSARY OPTIONS
Deva asked for suggestions on how SGA could get involved in Trinity’s 150th anniversary celebration throughout next year. Ideas included a collaboration with the archive for an exhibit, a bonfire, a live tiger or a concert featuring student or alumni talent.
Senior Rachel Daniel, vice president, reported that the Student Activity Fee (SAF) funding came out to under their estimate but $3,000 more than last year.
Daniel also asked for volunteers to help her benchmark Trinity’s SAF against other similar universities to see if the fee needs to be raised or reallocated. She expressed a wish to create a task force including administrators and representatives from student organizations to find a sustainable plan for the SAF and determine if it should continue to fund Bell Center operations and campus publications.
Kara McLean, senior, was introduced as the new legislative relations chair.