Three members of the Undergraduate Student Government will attend next week’s State University of New York Student Assembly Conference, the USG Senate confirmed in its meeting Thursday night.
Treasurer Taylor Bouraad — who won the right to attend in a 12-9 secret ballot vote over Vice President of Communications Brody Hooper — will attend the biannual conference as a representative of the executive council.
Sen. Jan Jaminal will represent Stony Brook as a representative of the senate in next week’s assembly in Saratoga Springs, while Elizabeth Osei was voted unanimously to attend the assembly as a representative of the Judiciary.
The Spring 2016 SUNY Student Assembly Conference is scheduled to be held April 15-17. The conference will include “a rigorous agenda … including resolutions regarding unpaid internships, sustainability, campus safety and diversity,” according to the assembly’s website.
Bouraad also announced details of the proposed 2016-17 budget. The treasurer said that 86.15 percent of student clubs will see their funds either stay the same or increase. In all, $1.14 million will be allotted to clubs and organizations, an increase from the $1.08 million allocated in the 2015-16 school year.
Bouraad said that $15,656.41 remains unallocated in the grant pool from the 2015-16 budget.
Hooper spoke about the recent creation of a USG Snapchat account. The vice president of communications announced that the Snapchat app will have geographic filters for Future and Cash Cash during the musicians’ Brookfest performance on April 13.
Vice President of Student Life Fiqry Kleib formally announced that The Daily Show host Trevor Noah will perform a stand-up comedy act at Stony Brook on April 29 at the Island Federal Credit Union Arena.
President Cole Lee railed against the New York State legislature for its recent failure to renew SUNY 2020 in its annual budget. SUNY 2020 was a measure originally implemented in 2011 that allowed universities to increase tuition incrementally and predictably each year.
Lee argued that politicians in Albany refrained from extending the law “because it is an election year” and that university students and families are owed the “fairness, equity and predictability” of knowing what future tuition costs will be.
Senate members provided updates on their semester projects, as several legislators sought to increase or improve mental health resources.
“I want to really reduce the stigma behind [Counseling and Psychological Services],” Sen. Patrick Smith said. “I’d like to increase the awareness toward it, specifically for commuter students … They offer a lot of meditation programs, abuse counseling programs, and a lot of people don’t know about that.”
Some senators’ plans involved improving tutoring and advising on campus. Sen. Asim Rattu focused more narrowly on the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, where he feels incoming students should have more specialized advising to coordinate rigorous engineering schedules.
The senator projects covered a wide array of issues. Sen. Laura O’Shea showed a concern for pedestrian safety on campus and she said she has been in contact with university officials looking to install a traffic light at the intersection adjacent to West Side Dining.
Sen. Victor Ng said that he is looking to implement a $10 student media fee to help support the student-run media organizations on campus.