Concerned students address Senate, FVP Ciccone presents on MUSG Budget, Senator Zach Wallace elected as LVP

At its meeting on Thursday, April 10, 2014, Marquette University Student Government Senate heard from two concerned students. Marguerite Biagi, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences and president of Alpha Phi fraternity, advocated for MUSG’s support of Recommendation #11 Collegiate Housing and Infrastructure Act. Recommendation #11 would allow donations for collegiate housing to be tax deductible. Senior Ahlam Ayesh brought to Senate’s attention Marquette’s lack of policy to accommodate for religious holidays. Ayesh urged MUSG to pursue a policy that would allow students to be excused from class in order to observe religious holidays.

Financial Vice President Nick Ciccone then presented on the budget for fiscal year 2015. Revenue for the MUSG budget comes from the Student Activity Fee collected from all undergraduate students, program board excursions, senior week, and interest from the reserve fund. The budget is used for administrative expenses, programs and services, program board and Student Organization Funding. FVP Ciccone and the budget committee will go to each of the four Senate standing committees for opinions on the budget. Senate will vote on the budget at its April 24 meeting.

Senate then considered Resolution #6 Veto Override. Former MUSG President Sam Schultz vetoed legislation proposed by Program Vice President Ryan Twaddle to provide buses for students to Target next semester. This program would be funded by the MUSG reserve fund, which comes from unused student activity fees. Former President Schultz originally vetoed this legislation, seeing this program as unnecessary due to student’s possession of U-PASSes. Former President Schultz did not see the legislation as in line with Marquette’s Jesuit identity, which call us to live in community with others. After deliberation the Senate did not override the veto with the vote of 5-19-1.

The Senate deliberated on Recommendation #11 Collegiate Housing and Infrastructure act, presented on by concerned student Marguerite Biagi. Senate passed Recommendation #11 unanimously.

Senate accepted nominations for Legislative Vice President. Off-Campus Senator Nathan Craft nominated College of Arts & Sciences Senator Zack Wallace, who ran unopposed.

“Instead of sitting an office that seems exclusive, let’s go out to students and show them that we care,” Wallace said when asked about his ideas for improving Senate’s communication with students. The Senate approved Wallace unanimously.

Next, Senate moved to fill its two open academic seats on the SOF committee. Senate elected College of Engineering Senator Ricky Krajewski and College of Education Senator Amanda Stolz unanimously.

Additionally, the SOF committee had an open residential seat. Schroder Hall Senator Alexander Lech and McCormick Hall Senator Murphy Quill both ran for this position. After debate, Senate voted and, because four senators abstained, there was no majority achieved to elect a candidate. A second round of voting produced the same results. A third round of voting resulted in a tie 12-12-1. A fourth round of voting resulted in the election of Senator Lech to the SOF committee.

Moving to the consideration of Amendment #10 SOF Changes. Former MUSG Executive Vice President Zach Bowman presented the proposals in the amendment. This amendment would allow organization for funding in more then one period for different expenses examines MUSG policy on capital goods, clarifies allocations off-campus expenses in addition to other initiatives to improve the SOF process. After extensive deliberation,  the authors of the legislation withdrew the legislation from consideration. MUSG will keep students informed on future action taken to improve the SOF process.

Senate adjourned at 11:35 p.m.


Ad Hoc Committee on Student Organization Funding Review Presentation

On Thursday, March 6, Marquette University Student Government Senate convened for a presentation from its Ad Hoc Committee on Student Organization Funding Review.

The committee’s chair Executive Vice President Zach Bowman presented the results of the committee’s six meetings, including eight proposed changes to the MUSG financial policies. Senators will review the proposed changes in their committee meetings in the week following spring break. The ad hoc committee will continue to work on redesigning the SOF application and reforming the SOF guidelines.

Students with questions about potential changes to the SOF process should contact EVP Bowman at musg.execvp@marquette.edu.

Senate then discussed the approval of SOF allocations. After debate regarding the validity of a percent reduction, Senate approved three SOF allocations in excess of $2,500. The approval included two allocations to the Muslim Student Association for $3,300 and $3,000 to bring speakers during Islam Awareness Week. The College Republicans received $5,625 toward hosting speaker Karl Rove.

MUSG Senate unanimously passed Amendment #8 Implementation of Reserve Fund Cap. As a result of the amendment, if the MUSG Reserve Fund amasses to greater than fifty percent of the MUSG annual operating budget at the close of any fiscal year, a cap will be initiated to curb the amount of money that goes into the reserve fund the following year. The excess funds will then be made available for use by the organizations and departments on campus at the discretion of the MUSG Budget Committee.

The Senate also unanimously passed Resolution #4 Commending Laid-Off Employees and Recommendation #9 Extending the D2L Timeline. With Resolution #4, MUSG sends the organization’s thanks and gratitude to the 25 former employees for their years of service to Marquette and its student body. Recommendation #9 recommends that D2L is amended to allow students to access their courses for a minimum of two weeks after final exams.

Resolution #5 Reserve Fund Allocation for Water Bottle Fillers was heavily debated in the Senate. The resolution proposed allocating $11,690 from the Reserve Fund to Marquette plumbing contractor JM Brennan for the purchase and installation of one new water fountain with attached digital refilling station, three additional digital refilling systems and ten “gooseneck” water bottler fillers at various locations across campus. Ultimately, the resolution was tabled until the next Senate meeting on Thursday, March 20.

Senate adjourned at 10:58 p.m.

For more information on MUSG’s news and events, visit musg.mu.edu or the MUSG office, AMU 133. For additional updates, like MUSG on Facebook and follow MUSG on Twitter.


Student Organization Committee Update – Feb. 26

After a very successful fall semester, we were saddened to see our committee chair Senator Emmaline Jurgena leave us, but we wish her the best of luck at Marquette’s Les Aspin Center in Washington, D.C. Her work as chair has set a precedent of devotion to MUSG and it is our goal as a committee to continue on this path.

It is our committee goal to address the needs of existing student organizations by widening the scope of our work. We hope that in the near future, we will fully assume a role as the liaison between campus student organizations and MUSG.

Our committee has made it a goal to be more connected with the student organizations on campus by actively pursuing communication with student organization executive board members. Each member of our committee has made connections with the executive board members of the nearly 300 student organization on campus—it’s simply a matter of harnessing these connections.

Our biggest project this semester is to more comprehensively understand the needs of MU’s student organizations through our focus group initiative. Beginning on Feb. 27, the committee will be conducting monthly focus groups comprised of three committee members and eight e-board members of various student organizations. We have compiled an array of questions and hope to spark discussion among the student organizations about what sort of tangible changes they would like to see on MU’s campus. These meetings will run for roughly 45 minutes.

The first focus group meeting on Feb. 27 is at attendance capacity, but please do not hesitate to contact the committee if you would like to attend our focus group meeting in mid-March.

We are thrilled to be your Student Organizations Committee this semester. If any organizations have questions or are seeking resources, please contact any of our fantastic committee members or myself.

Christian Evans
Student Organizations Chair
Straz Hall Senator
christian.evans@marquette.edu


Communications Vice President approved, Recommendation #8 passed unanimously

On Thursday, Feb. 20, MUSG Senate met to approve the Communications Vice President and debate the St. Francis pledge.

Senate invited Dr. John Su, Chairman of the University Board of Undergraduate Studies, to present on the ongoing review of the University Core Curriculum. Dr. Su explained the review process and gave background on the curriculum review. He answered questions from Senate, and told attendees that if they have any more questions or suggestions for the committee, they can contact MUSG Academics Committee Chair Zach Wallace.

With the consent of MUSG Judicial Administrator Sarah Miller and Adviser Matt Lengen, MUSG voted to confirm Sarah McClanahan as Communications Vice President for the 2014-1 school year by a vote of 23-3-1. During the previous MUSG Senate meeting, McClanahan’s appointment was tabled due to concerns that a student at-large was not a part of the CVP selection committee. Miller reviewed the issue, and determined that there was a sufficient effort to find a student to attend the interview, and recommended that Senate move to confirm McClanahan.

Senate announced a new piece of legislation, Recommendation #8 “A Recommendation for Marquette to Sign the St. Francis Pledge to Care for Creation and the Poor.” The recommendation encourages Marquette University to adopt the St. Francis Pledge, continue to increase sustainability on campus and support student awareness of environmental issues.

Recommendation #8 was authored by Off-Campus Senators Natasha Hansen and Alison Libera, College of Business Administration Senator Courtney Guc, College of Communication Senator Caroline Philips, College of Arts and Sciences Senator Whitney Madeen and College of Nursing Senator Matt Brune. The recommendation passed unanimously with a vote of 27-0-0.

MUSG wants to inform students that Communication Department applications for the 2014-15 academic year are now available. Students interested in graphic design, public relations and multimedia are strongly encouraged to apply. Application can be found on the MUSG website at musg.mu.edu/getinvolved. Questions about the positions or application should be directed to musg.communications@marquette.edu.


Office of Sustainability presents, Senate approves Program Vice President, passes amendments to improve executive board election process

On Thursday February 6, 2014, Marquette University Student Government Senate convened for a presentation from Mike Wittow and Andrew Seifert from the Office of Sustainability, approved the Program Vice President for the 2014-15 academic year and discussed amendments to the election process.

Andrew Seifert spoke on Marquette’s use of energy, water and waste. Since the Office of Sustainability began its initiatives in 2007, they have seen an increase in recycling and a decrease in waste. Environmentally friendly additions have already been made on campus including dual flush toilets, low flow faucets, trayless dining, and weather-informed irrigation. Wittow encourages students to pursue their concerns on sustainability and emphasized the office’s willingness to help with these concerns.

PPT Ryan Twaddle was selected as the 2014-15 Program Board Vice President and approved by Senate unanimously. Twaddle previously served as a College of Arts and Sciences Senator and President Pro Tempore of the Senate.

Looking forward to his term, Twaddle said, “Juniors and seniors put money into the student activity fee, so I would like to see some more activities targeted towards upperclassmen.”

Next on the agenda was the approval of Student Organization Funding for the most recent application period. Senate approved allocations of funds for Students for Justice in Palestine, Active Minds, Habitat for Humanity, MARDI GRAS New York and MARDI GRAS New Orleans.

Lastly, the Senate unanimously passed two amendments to the constitution to improve the executive board election process. Amendment 6, authored by Off-Campus Senators Natasha Hansen and Thomas Schick extends the term of the Legislative Vice President to April 30, consist with other vice president positions. Amendment 7, authored by McCormick Hall Senator Murphy Quill, clarifies the process of choosing a vice president and allows for another seat on the selection committees.

Senate will meet again Thursday, Feb 13 at 7:30 pm in AMU 267.


Meet MUSG: Off-Campus Senator Nathan Craft

Nathan Craft is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Political Science. As an Off-Campus Senator in MUSG, Nathan helps bring the concerns of students living off-campus to Senate.

Craft_N

Other than MUSG, Nathan is involved in Club Golf and the Les Aspin Council; he also enjoys working as the assistant coach for Catholic Memorial High School’s boys varsity soccer team.

While this is his first year in MUSG, Nathan enjoys getting to work with students, faculty, and administration with hopes to better Marquette and the neighborhood.

Reflecting on his time at Marquette, Nathan named his experience at the Les Aspin Center for Government in Washington, D.C. his favorite Marquette memory.

Stop in AMU 133 to say hi to Nathan, but be sure not to mention the 1971 classic, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

“The Oompa Loompas and Gene Wilder gives me nightmares to this day. I despise that movie,” said Craft.


Senate approves 3 SOF Committee members, 2 Budget Committee members

On Thursday, January 30, 2014, Marquette University Student Government voted to approve new members for two of its standing committees: Student Organization Funding and Budget.

Zach Wallace, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences, and Nathan Craft, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, were both approved for the Budget Committee. Wallace and Craft now hold academic and residential seats, respectively. Both ran uncontested.

Estefania Elizondo, a sophomore in the College of Communications, and Amanda Stolz, a sophomore in the College of Education, were both approved for two open academic seats on the SOF Committee. The election was also uncontested.

The only contested race of the night was for the residential seat on the SOF Committee. John O’Rourke, a freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences, and Ricky Krajewski, a freshman in the College of Health Sciences, both ran for the single open residential seat on the SOF Committee. Carpenter Tower Senator Ricky Krajewski won the election 17-10.

In his officer report, LVP Whelton informed senators that both Senate seats representing Schroeder Hall are open. Interested students can obtain applications at musg.mu.edu/getinvolved.

CVP Lahr reminded senators to attend “Night of Mystery” at 9 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 1 in the Weasler Auditorium. For more information, visit musg.wordpress.com.

Senate adjourned at 8:58 p.m.

For more information on MUSG’s news and events, visit musg.mu.edu or the MUSG office, AMU 133. For additional updates, like MUSG on Facebook and follow MUSG on Twitter.