Graduate senate leader discusses housing issues with board of trustees

John Riedel, Staff Writer

Issues concerning university finances, educational policy, construction projects and student housing were discussed at the bi-annual board of trustees meeting.

President Sullivan, several administrators, and trustees met on October 2nd.

The meeting began with the Committee of the Whole where UVM leaders and administrators provided annual reports to the board.

CODIE COTTRELL/The Vermont Cynic

President of the Graduate Student Senate, Devin Champagne, focused on the recent sale of graduate student housing by UVM during his report.

“While GSS is working to enhance the sense of community, many graduate students feel that  their connection to UVM are being lost to administrative decisions,” Champagne said.

Due to the high cost of graduate school, and the amount of work graduate students do, many students rely on high interest student loans.

“The requirements of graduate education make it nearly impossible for most students to take a second job, therefore many are forced to rely on high high-interest, costly student loans,” Champagne said.

UVM will not be able to stay competitive in the market for for high quality graduate students if they can’t provide them with necessary resources, Champagne said.

SGA President Jason Maulucci gave his report on what initiatives SGA are working on.

The first initiative he spoke about is a peer-advising program aimed to provide more academic support to students.

A pilot program will start in the spring semester and will target first-year students.

He also spoke about improving relations between permanent residents and students living in Burlington.

“Another one we’ve set is to improve the relationship between students and permanent residents in the city of burlington,” Maulucci said.

The SGA has increased lines of communication between both permanent and student residents, Maulucci said.

Following Maulucci, President of the UVM Alumni Association, Kristina Pisanelli, gave the 2015 UVM Alumni Association report.

Pisanelli spoke about the UVM Alumni House renovations that are currently under way.

Fundraising efforts for the project have passed the $6.7 million dollar goal but the association is continuing to raise money for the project.