SGA plans for upcoming semester

The governing body of UVM students is back in session. The Student Government Association resumed activity with the start of school, boasting a new group of senators attempting to solve issues on campus. Students can look forward to further movements towards course evaluations being posted online, which was not fully achieved last year due to administrative issues among other things, Gavin Caster, Academic Affairs Committee chair, said. Another project the Academic Affairs committee will be working on is getting the international standard book numbers (ISBN) of all books required for courses posted in the class description, according to Caster. “We would like to have greater provision of info and informed decisions with classes especially with the price of textbooks,” committee member Tom Campbell said. The Academic Affairs Committee is not the only one working to finish up projects from last year. The Legislative Action Committee will be working on some continuous projects from the past year, along with a few new ones, Katie Rifken, chair of the Legislative Action Committee, said. “We are continuing our work with the Office of Student and Community Relations on events such as ‘Have a Heart,’ an event encouraging students to be respectful when in the neighborhoods at night,” Rifken said. While many committees are working on projects made to represent the students’ voice within the school, the Legislative Action Committee is working on bringing the opinions of students to the national level, she said. “We are currently working on registering students to vote in the Vermont November elections,” Rifken said. The Student Action Committee will be working closely with clubs this year to achieve a better financial balance and overall relationship, committee chair Robert Benner said. “I really want clubs and club leaders to feel the SGA is looking out for them as a friend not a parent,” Benner said. Part of this goal will involve increased meetings with clubs on an individual basis to discuss budgets and only allocating money for things that are within the club’s mission, he said. “We want to make sure every time we give out money, it is promoting something that is going to be used and used well,” Benner said. “[It] will take a lot of work.” Limited funds left some clubs feeling left out last year, according to Benner. “Last year, because of financial shortcomings, there were a lot of clubs that felt unrepresented,” he said. Another project the student action committee will be working on is collaboration with UVM BORED to create a calendar that lists club and other organization meetings, Benner said. “They can go to any meeting whenever they want and they don’t have to be on the listserv,” he said. “It will make everything a lot easier.” Some senators said they all seem to be leaning towards one goal this year: better representation of their student body. “That’s the role of any student government,” Benner said. “Your voice should be heard as easy as possible.”