SGA looks ahead to new year

Student Government Association (SGA) President Jay Taylor began to lay out plans for the upcoming spring semester in a campus-wide e-mail.Since Taylor took office as SGA president, he has seen the organization become more involved in campus affairs, Taylor said in the e-mail. The SGA will compile and produce both “The UVMer’s Guide to the University Structure” and “the UVMer’s Guide to Student Rights and Responsibilities,” Taylor said.The former is a description of how the administration, Board of Trustees and the governance groups interact and drive the University forward. The latter is said to be an informative document outlining the rights of UVM students. “Many people don’t even know where the rules are posted, but there is a little booklet published every year with the current rights and responsibilities, including the description of the University judicial process,” Taylor said. “We will be working closely with the Graduate Student Senate to increase the overall representation that UVM students have with the President of the University and the Board of Trustees,” Taylor said. “While we are having this discussion, we will also be taking a closer look at the structure of the SGA and see where we might be able to make changes.”Among many things the SGA has accomplished this past semester, the meal plan is a definite achievement, Taylor said.”After spending a lot of time in Meal Plan Task Force meetings with the other members of the group and discussing different options,” Taylor said. “I firmly believe that the proposed meal plan will greatly benefit both the residential students with meal plans and those without meal plans that eat a few meals a week in the dining facilities.”Also, the Committee on Legislative Action (COLA) has created a Web site with resources for people trying to host safe parties and/or be respectful party-goers, Taylor said.Although SGA is still trying to get the word out about “The Lynx,” the organizational-management system that is available to all UVM students, all of the SGA clubs are using it at least in some capacity, and many other student organizations have joined in, Taylor said.SGA Vice President Emma Kennedy has also been working hard to continue to expand student representation on various campus committees.Kennedy, along with several others, has been working to revamp the SGA Web site, making it more functional for clubs, students and prospective students, Taylor said.While SGA will continue to represent UVM students in the coming semester, Taylor will be working with others to reconstruct UVM’s budget.”I will be a part of this at times unpleasant budget restructuring process, and will include others as much as I can,” Taylor said. “What is most important to me is the value of our education and the integrity of the student experience at UVM, both inside and outside of the classroom.”