A graduate student’s concern led to an impromptu election at the Feb. 21 SGA meeting.
Natalie Snow, a doctoral candidate and graduate assistant in the department of criminal justice, was sworn in as a senator for the graduate school. Snow said that six members of her department were being forced from their Ross Hall offices to create dining space for eStem students.
“We need our own space,” Snow said, before alluding to the recent SGA eStem petition as a cause for the shakeup. After airing her concerns, Snow expressed interest in serving as a postgraduate representative. Her election was unanimous.
The SGA also approved a measure to supplement the cost of a recent concert on campus with $500 from its programming budget. The free-admission event, featuring singer Jordy Searcy at the WOW Café on Feb. 20, was organized by the university’s Young Life chapter. Kayla Gibeault of Young Life said her organization agreed to pay $400 of the concert’s $1,000 cost from its university-allocated funds, along with making the decision to not charge admission.
“We didn’t want to host an event where people have to pay to get in,” Gibeault said.
Sen. Katie Zakrzewski suggested that the event be used as a launching pad for future campus events, “so people cannot say we have no campus life.” Other senators echoed Zakrzewski’s remarks, agreeing that monthly concerts or comedy performances would be worth organizing in the future.
Additionally, Interim President Larry Dicus introduced a campus light improvement plan developed with Ian Hadden, UA Little Rock’s director of energy management services. With a targeted completion date of June 2019, the plan’s first phase includes replacement of light poles and fixtures around the 28th Street pedestrian entrance at the Reynolds Business Building and installation of new lights at the 32nd Street bridge and Student Services Building entrance, along with other improvements.
SGA expressed their support of the plan, and Sen. Zakrzewski will head a sub-committee to compile a list of lights in need of replacement and determine appropriate action.
The SGA also voted to join the American Student Government Association, allocating $597 from its stipend budget. Associate dean of students and SGA staff advisor Richard Harper, recommended the motion, saying that ASGA membership will provide the student government with access to training conferences and speakers.
“It’ll give us some well-needed development,” Harper said.