The following covers the meeting on Nov. 28.
Sophomore senator Mia Quintanilla noted that the Maverick lecturer, Mark Shields, was very interesting. Sophomore senator Noelle Barerra pointed out that there were few students in attendance, though the theater was very full of people from the community.
VICE PRESIDENT SERIES
In the final part of the Vice President Series, Gary Logan, vice president for Finance and Administration, and Jim Bradley, chief information officer, took questions from the members of SGA about their respective departments.
Logan discussed how the university decides where to spend money. As a high-labor cost institution, $25 million of the $140 million operating budget is spent on salaries for faculty and staff. Financial aid is the next largest recipient of funding at $15 million, then building maintenance.
Logan reported that half of Trinity’s revenue is from student tuition, 35 percent is from endowments and the remainder is from sources such as donations.
Logan said that CSI has been very positive for the university despite the initial financial investment. Logan also explained that Trinity is unique when it comes to building maintenance because many of the buildings were built at the same time, between 1950 and 1970. This means that currently, many buildings need renovations. Chapman Hall, Halsell Center and the residence halls will be the end of a period of “aggressive renovation” before the construction on campus slows down.
Logan also spoke about raising tuition, which currently occurs in line with inflation rates. Logan explained that Trinity looks to its peer institutions when considering how much to raise tuition and that they neither want to be the most expensive school nor the cheapest. He described the national picture of tuition increases as deeply concerning and said that there needs to be attempts to change the cost structure to become more efficient.
Bradley discussed many aspects of Trinity’s information services. He touched on how it will be difficult to incorporate City Vista into Trinity’s network because it would require digging a trench across Hildebrand to lay fiberoptic cables for the building. Currently, the building’s services are subcontracted through Time Warner Cable.
Bradley also addressed TLearn and the possibility of switching from Moodle to another learning management system. Bradley pointed out that Moodle is free to use and that 60 percent of faculty are happy with it. Switching to another system would require faculty to spend time to adapt to the new platform, so Bradley explained that the switch would only be made if faculty were interested.
Bradley encouraged students to reach out to him with their comments and concerns regarding technology on campus.
Vice president Rachel Daniel, senior, debriefed the current administration’s on the allocation of the student activity fee (SAF) this year. SGA stayed within the annual budget, approving $686,009.48 in requests from RSOs and USOs with $2,988.27 remaining. Daniel also highlighted SGA’s use of their internal budget, which included co-sponsorships of events like the National Arab Orchestra and funding the menstrual product initiative.