VSA Council 10.18.2015

7:02//Call to Order and Attendance

Absent: 2016 (proxy), Lathrop (proxy), Main, THs, Town Students, Activities

7:03//Consensus agenda

a. Fund Apps

b. Minutes from 10/4/15

Finance: Capital items from LiNK, discretionary to Jewett, full allocation for VMSU.

7:04//unFramed Fund App

Matthew McCardwell: We are bringing Kay Ulanday Barrett, a trans poet. We need some extra money for our event this coming weekend.

SoCos: Can you explain the discrepancy in amount being asked?

McCardwell: We have gotten some extra money from over break. We also cut down some costs along the way so we are asking for less money than the initial fund app. The new amount being requested we need $3040 in total now from the VSA.

Finance: We are treating this like a new fund app now, to clarify. They really need the funding for this event now. This is difficult because QCVC tried to bring this same speaker earlier this year and they had to cancel it when they found out about this event and they had to pay cancellation fees, which means they can’t contribute more than about $50. I recommend a full allocation. None of this is really their fault.

SoCos: Is this a closed session?

Finance: Let’s enter a closed session for 15 minutes.

~closed session~

Finance: Okay, thanks for coming. We will give the full allocation.

7:21//Reports

Operations: I have to change my reports. We are ahead of schedule for restructuring. We need people to engage in these conversations. We will be discussing student life and academics. We are going to go forward to buy shuttles for the Saturday shuttles. Ben Lotto wants us to put together the money for this. We have to rethink who attends Tasty Tuesday. They are on semester contracts. I’ve had people approach me about attending Tasty Tuesday.

SoCos: Curious about the shuttle thing. Can we look at multiple options and scenarios?

Ops: We will talk about that in Ops.

Ferry: Can we talk about the space that it is in? Maybe the bottom part of UpC?

Ops: We can think about that, but having it in Main is better.

Pres: Say no to Subway. This is local business.

TAs: If we make this a student employment position, let’s make sure they actually get paid.

Raymond: Where is the money coming from?

Ops: Student Employment says we need to make a report about who pays for this.

SoCos: There are a lot of other things to think about for this payment stuff.

President: Bystander Intervention training is still ongoing. You need to do it. Seven Sisters Conference is approaching. I’ve been working on a project about NYC transportation. Board of Trustees will be here this weekend. We will talk about campus climate. Judy Jarvis sent me stuff about the privilege campaign.

SoCos: Bring up joint committee stuff to BoT?

Pres: Logan and I are on one that they forgot to include us in.

TAs: As a member of CCL, it’s the worst. Roellke’s exec assistant sends us a time and it is not set up properly. They need to get their shit together.

Pres: Exec is also meeting with Cappy tomorrow. We will bring it up to her.

Ferry: We talked about how people who are in charge of joint committees need to actually show up to their meetings.

Ops: We should talk about this soon.

Ferry: Let’s do Class D legislation. If we vote on this, they have to look at it and respond to it.

Pres: Bryn Mawr also does it. They need a third of the student body to attend and anything they pass becomes binding.

7:34//Constituent Concerns

Ops: A concern was brought up via facebook.

Jon: You are expected to write a thank you letter if you receive a named scholarship. Also, you need to write a thank you letter or give the money back if you receive money from the Internship Grant Fund.

SoCos: These are all different offices. Usually the development office asks for the thank you note.

Abby: How do they intend to enforce that?

Pres: Probably just charge your account. Also, last night I sent a slightly aggressive email to Cappy about the fireworks.

Cushing: A $5 fee for the fall concert? I don’t think that’s fair. We have money.

2016: I used to be ViCE director. We always ticket at least one show.

Cushing: If that’s a fundraiser, then it should be different.

Raymond: I went to a Grace Hopper conference. I want to know if VSA could sponsor a screening of this film we talked about about coding.

TAs: I would suggest maybe approaching some departments as well. I think it’s a great idea.

SoCos: The science bridge is going up. Maybe asking Cappy?

Ferry: There are discussions about how to get more women in the sciences. How do we encourage women to become more involved in the hard sciences.

Ops: Josh and I both sit on the Committee on Financial Aid. We can bring that up. I also wanted to say we should table this to a committee to put together the event.

2017: Get in touch with major’s committees.

Raymond: We talked about how computer science should be introduced in high school.

7:49//Open Discussion

Cushing: For those who were not there for the panel the Thursday before break, we had a panel about the refugee crisis. It’s the biggest crisis since WWII and the greatest crisis of our generation. What can we as an institution do for this? We have precedence, we did stuff in the 30s and 40s. Professor Hoehn and I met to talk about starting a student org group. We talked about a few options. We will be having panels for the dorms in the next few weeks in order to spread awareness and create a core group. She also said she would give an independent study course for those who want to be more involved. Cappy is on board, but wants to hear more from students.

Raymond: Maybe set up a scholarship for students to volunteer during spring break.

2017: How specific is the core group going to be?

Cushing: I think it is focused on the Middle East, African, European area. I don’t think it has to be limited.

Ferry: A lot of other colleges have alternate spring break….to help out at these NGOs.

Abby: I would think that going forward, it would be great to think about what they need the most. Maybe reaching out and finding out the best way we can help.

Cushing: One suggestion was having online classes and having joint classes with refugees.

Raymond: Something the Vassar Christian Fellowship is doing is collecting clothes to donate.

Student Life: Updates for last week’s stuff. we talked about the whiteness workshops. We met with them as an Exec Board. We decided not to fund them because of uneasiness. We felt there was a lack of acknowledgement and care for people of color. We are now going to start working on creating affinity spaces for people of color. We just feel this is not something the administration seems to address.

2018: Last week there were concerns about how it is sponsored by the ALANA center. Did you talk to B?

StuLife: I didn’t, but I can. B will be running at least one session.

Ops: I want to encourage everyone about POC spaces. Let’s support the places that exist already.

2018: How do you feel about this now?

StuLife: They already said they were going to do the workshops, with or without our funding. I pretty much have the same opinion as last time.

Ops: My opinion hasn’t changed. I support the workshops, but the way in which this has been brought about is questionable.

Pres: I think teaching white people to not be racist is a great thing. It’s not great that the college is paying for the privileged group to be taught, instead of taking a two-pronged approach.

TAs: When is this and was anyone invited?

StuLife: They sent out an email. About 15 people signed up right now?

Raymond: The nine houses probably got it.

Abby: We need to train the freshman class council.