Allegheny Student Government held its weekly meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 29. At the meeting, Connor Racine, ’16, ASG director of diversity and inclusion, delivered his weekly report in which he called for greater transparency within Allegheny’s Council on Diversity and Equity.
CODE’s primary focus, according to the council’s website, is to promote diversity and equity among Allegheny students, staff and faculty. Two members of the council include Ande Diaz, associate provost for diversity and organizational development, and Ron Cole, provost and dean of the college.
In his report to ASG, Racine voiced his concerns that the council has lacked transparency. He encouraged class senators to put pressure on the council to be more specific when dealing with ASG.
“If they say they are doing great things, make sure you have them specify,” he said.
Racine explained that the council will often not discuss initiatives or projects until they are almost entirely completed.
“I feel that the public should have input before everything is all hammered out,” Racine said.
ASG Treasurer Hayden Moyer, ’17, also delivered his weekly report at the meeting.
Moyer reported for the first time on the exact balances of the ASG’s accounts, including the Gator of the Year fund, which is derived from the student activities fee.
“That’s the one that got hit by underenrollment,” Moyer said.
The fund was projected to have $100,000, but between the underenrollment of the class of 2018 and 2019, Moyer said the fund currently stands at $58,430.
Moyer also reported the current balance of ASG’s general fund to be around $60,000 and a balance of around $47,000 in the surplus fund.
Public Events Committee
At Tuesday’s meeting, Chairman of the Public Events Committee James Niblock also spoke on the need for greater involvement with the committee.
The committee’s goal, according to its website, is to “select a series of public events that enrich the intellectual and cultural life of the Allegheny and Meadville communities.” Niblock said in recent years the college’s yearly theme has taken away much of the committee’s responsibilities.
“Our concern, though, is the members of the committee have been discussing whether the idea of the yearly theme is fulfilling everything it should,” Niblock said.
Niblock explained he feels the first step is creating a way for students and faculty to give voice to what they are getting out of the yearly theme. He said this will likely take the form of a survey.
“What we have started to do is create a survey implement to distribute and have faculty and students fill out,” Niblock said.
Niblock also expressed his concern about how specific the themes are every year. He said by making them so specific, it can potentially limit the number of students who benefit from the year’s events. He said the lack of input on the theme is something the committee hopes to change.
“In the last five years, there has been only one suggestion for the theme,” Niblock said.
In the past, Niblock said ASG had a delegate who served on the committee. He feels that having another delegate would help to ensure the voices of students are heard, even if the delegate is not from student government.
“We want to choose people who are genuinely interested in events on campus. It doesn’t matter where it comes from,” he said.