Stony Brook University’s Undergraduate Student Government (USG) Senate voted unanimously to appoint sophomore social work major Victoria Correa as the commuter student representative for the Faculty Student Association’s (FSA) Board of Directors in the Senate’s second meeting of the semester on Thursday, Sept. 6.
USG’s Executive Branch recommended Correa, the undergraduate coordinator for the Office of Commuter Services & Off Campus Living, to fill the last of USG’s three board positions within the FSA. In a brief speech to the senators that preceded the vote, Correa said her status as a commuter student and experience with CSS would make her an ideal fit for the spot.
“I am a commuter student myself,” Correa said. “And I see there are problems and there are things going well that I want to bring to everybody’s attention. Forty-seven to 50 percent of Stony Brook is commuter students. That’s a very large population that we want to make sure are represented.”
The Senate voted 19-0, with two vacancies, to appoint Correa. She ran unopposed, which CAS senator and senior mathematics major, Andrew Machkasov, noted was not something he had seen in previous semesters with USG.
“It’s not something that’s happened before. Last year, the resident-student candidate was a senator, the year before that the commuter-student candidate was a senator at the time as well,” Machkasov said. “It’s quite possible that no one here was a commuter, which is unfortunate, or that nobody else was interested, which is why the executives had to appoint somebody from outside. I didn’t know [Correa] beforehand, but from her speech and the fact that several people vouched for her she sounds like a great candidate for the position.”
The Senate also elected graduate public policy student Matthew J. Walker to the position of parliamentarian in a 14-0 vote. Walker is CSS’s Graduate Coordinator for Off-Campus Living, and USG Treasurer Adrian Ortega vouched for his reliability in a short endorsement.
“Matt’s really reliable and he types really fast,” Ortega, a junior computer engineering major, said, provoking laughter from the senators.
Further down the agenda for the night were concerns senators had about USG’s new online payroll service, Ceridian Dayforce. Several senators have been unable to log in to their accounts on Ceridian’s website, and several more were unable to input their office hours for payment.
“I completely understand it’s confusing, I’m still learning a lot about it,” Executive Vice President and senior political science major Abdelrahman Salama said. “Send me all your hours for this week. After this week it is your responsibility.”
Going forward, Ortega asked all senators to make sure to clock in and clock out on Ceridian during their office hours and properly log the time they spend serving during USG events in the interest of maximum transparency.
Machkasov noted that the issues with filling out positions and properly logging payroll hours were nothing unusual for this stage of the fall semester, and just a symptom of senators adjusting to their new roles.
“We haven’t had a formal training of how to do our position, and we just switched to a new payroll system,” Machkasov said. “There’s a bit of a learning curve, some people may or may not end up deciding this is for them. But it seems like everything all in all is going fairly smoothly.”