The 60th Student Senate met Wednesday night to discuss elections within the Senate, the Judicial Board, Alumni Affairs Committee, University Police Department (UPD) Committee, Arts and Aesthetics Committee, Honors Advisory Council Committee, Student Concerns Committee, Academic Senate Committee and Academic Affairs Committee.
Before elections began, Senator Rookie Reynoso encouraged students to vote and also talked about declining statistics of black students. She said that black students continue to apply to New Paltz and get accepted but choose other universities because they are more competitive and offer more diversity.
Reynoso also mentioned that Major Coleman of the Black Studies department wants to create a committee of both faculty and students who will help hire new department professors now that some professors are retiring or transferring departments. The objective of the committee would be to have more students have a say in their major department. She said the department is also trying to hire temporary adjunct faculty for the spring semester.
Vice President of Academic Affairs Nicole Striffolino spoke next, informing the Senate that construction of Sojourner Truth Library (STL) will not be going on during final exams. The hard deadline for the project would be before final exams but the contractors are hoping to be finished before Thanksgiving. She explained that there were two different contractors for the project – one through Campus Auxiliary Services (CAS) for the new cafe, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, and another contractor through the university that was focusing specifically on library renovations. Construction delays were caused by a merging of the two projects into one because CAS preferred the work of the STL contractor.
When elections began, Senate Chair Paul Brown mentioned that the Senate only had 22 senators but needed 25. Senators voted in first-year Amir Haghi, second-year Stephanie Liew and first-year Judy Lin.
For Judicial Board elections, the senators voted in fourth-year Xiao Mei Su as the interim associate justice and third-year Austin Alvarado as the interim alternate justice.
First-year Andrea Paredes was elected into the Alumni Affairs Committee; second-year April Hannah was elected into the UPD Committee; fourth-year Drew Parker was voted into the Arts and Aesthetics Committee; first-year Winnie Guo was elected into the Social Justice Coalition (SJC); and third-year Arjeta Prenaj was elected into the Honors Advisory Council Committee.
No one showed up to be elected into the Student Concerns Committee, the Academic Senate Committee or the Academic Affairs Committee.
Chairwoman of the Council of Organizations, Esoshani Barton, also said that charters for clubs are due Monday, Sept. 28 at 11:59 p.m. She said that the charters are time stamped and that any club that sends in their charter late will be penalized. The next Council of Organizations meeting is Monday, Sept. 28 in SUB 62/63 at 7 p.m.