SG Update 09/07
by Anika Talia Griffiths | published Sep. 12th, 2018
Roar the Vote
Student Government (SG) is partnering with the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement to get students prepared to vote in the midterm elections.
“I think it’s important [because], as representatives, we are the people that everyone’s looking to in our colleges and constituencies. So, if it’s us as leaders and representatives trying to push this initiative, people are much more likely to register [to vote],” said SG President Bobby Moakley, a fourth year Environmental Science major.
According to data collected by the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement, there has been a seven percent increase in the voting rate among RIT students from 2012–2016 because of Roar the Vote. To help students learn about voting methods and how to register, the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement will be training SG senators to table-sit at various events across campus.
Although the Center's mission is to increase voter registration rates, they will not be pressuring students to vote if they choose not to. Neither will there be any partisan language, allowing students to make their own decisions about which candidates they would like to support. During table-sit events, students will be guided to register using the TurboVote tool and will be able to print out necessary voter information.
Moakley announced that Pace bikes are officially free for all students to use. Due to last year’s issue with bikes being damaged or left off campus, the Pace bikes come with a system in place to charge students who damage the bikes or use them irresponsibly. SG plans to start a marketing campaign that will encourage community responsibility for the Pace bikes and will explain how the bikeshare works. Due to poor weather conditions, the bikes are set to be taken off campus after Thanksgiving break and will return after spring break so as to avoid any weather-related damages.
SG senators will be trained in the next few weeks on the Title IX Policy, the C11 Policy and strategies on how to better fulfill their roles.
Voting and Position Approvals
KGCOE Senator Ashley Kosak, a fifth year Mechanical Engineering major, was voted in by the SG senate as a substitute for the SG vice president, Corinne Mendieta, a fifth year Mechanical Engineering Technology major, whenever she is absent. Kosak has been a part of SG since her second year at RIT and was well-received by the senate.
Director of Services Gabe Landau, a third year Web and Mobile Computing major, was voted in by the SG senate as parliamentarian. He has experience conducting meetings for over a year within his fraternity, and will therefore be able to skillfully fulfill the responsibilities of the role, including ensuring all SG members are well-versed in meeting ettiquette. He is also well-known by the senate because of his experience in SG.
Asma Sheikh, a third year Biomedical Sciences major, was approved by the SG senate for the position of interim NTID Student Council (NSC) president. NSC president and vice-president positions were left unfilled last year. Sheikh was elected interim president by the NSCA at the most recent meeting. Her position will allow for the voice of RIT’s deaf and hard-of-hearing community to be considered in SG decisions at the next few meetings until an official NSC president is elected.
Student Health Center Trans-Care Clinic
Ryan Roy, a third year ASL Interpreting to English major and the vice president for OUTspoken, wrote a proposition last year asking for the Student Health Center (SHC) to bring back hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for RIT’s trans community. With the help of OUTspoken, the SHC has made some improvements taking the trans community into consideration. There have been two new hires — one being Dr. Lindsay Phillips, who will be assisting in the trans care clinic. To assist with the development of the clinic, the SHC has partnered with the University of Rochester, which already offers HRT.
As a follow-up to the return of HRT on campus, OUTspoken asked that SG follow up with the Student Health Center to ensure HRT access for trans students. They also want to work with YearOne advisors to ensure that incoming students know about this access. They plan to also gather data on how the trans community feels regarding the effectiveness of the new trans care clinic.
Response to CAD Backlash
It has been brought to SG’s attention that some students don’t approve of the college name change from “College of Imaging Arts and Sciences” to “College of Art and Design.” As a response to this, the CAD administration has said that they are keeping the name change because it is more attractive to both employers and prospective students. They also say that they did research, including student surveys, that informed their decision to change the college's name.
Next Tuesday. Sept. 18, NSC will have a debate among presidential nominees so that the community can vote for their preferred candidate. This decision will be an advisory to SG, who will pass the final vote on NSC president.