On Wednesday, February 10, 2021, at 9:15 p.m. Central Time, the Illinois Tech Student Government Association (SGA) held their weekly Senate meeting. SGA Executive Vice President Derek Rhea led the session. To view the recorded Facebook livestream, visit https://bit.ly/3plbEoR.
Judicial Board nominations: Cesar Perez Yudin, Ethan Kuo
The first item on the agenda was the nomination and approval of two incoming Judicial Board justices, Cesar Perez Yudin and Ethan Kuo. Both students are freshmen, and have been interested in joining Judicial Board since fall 2020 to increase their involvement in the school and to aid and support the Illinois Tech student body. Kuo, an Aerospace Engineering major, served as Cadet Commander in his high school’s Civil Air Patrol program. Yudin is studying architecture and started and served as president in his school’s Model United Nations club. Both Kuo and Yudin were approved by the Senate unanimously with 20 votes in favor and one abstain, and were sworn in by Rhea.
Senator nomination: Pragna Kurra
Next was the approval of Pragna Kurra for position of the Institute of Design (ID) senator. Kurra is a first-year graduate student studying human-computer interaction at ID. Kurra has had a lot of leadership and professional experience as a teacher and mentor, as well as working on team projects, event planning, and fundraising. Kurra recently joined the Institute of Design Student Association (IDSA) and is on their advocacy team. Kurra wants to focus on the wellbeing of students during the pandemic and virtual learning in both SGA and IDSA. Kurra was approved by the Senate with 12 votes in favor, one against, and three abstains, and was sworn in by Rhea.
Old business: FACT amendments 1 & 2
The third item on the night’s agenda was the discussion of the FinBoard Accountability, Communication, and Transparency (FACT) Amendments. The FACT Amendments were previously brought up by Senators Shahaan Mirza, Ryan Manthy, Keru Omad, and Isaiah Mays with the intent of synergizing relationships between the Finance Board and Senate branches of Illinois Tech SGA. The FACT Amendments were first introduced in fall 2020 and discussion on them was tabled (see SGA Senate Recap (12/2/20) at https://bit.ly/3u6TXx0). The senators worked extensively with Finance Board Chair Anwesha Roy and Finance Board Vice Chair Chloe Rubinowicz along with the Office of Campus Life and Illinois Tech’s administration. The revised proposal includes new policies requiring disclosure of the SAF ledger, published audio recordings of all Finance Board meetings, and amended appointment procedures for Finance Board advisors. The FACT Amendments were approved, the first amendment getting 11 votes in support, one vote against, and one abstain, while the second amendment getting unanimously confirmed with 13 votes in favor.
Roy announced new office hours for Finance Board advising sessions. Office hours take place over Zoom from February 15, 2021 to February 19, 2021, from 12:45 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. CST. The next Finance Board Hearing takes place on February 21, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. CST. Lastly, Finance Board currently has openings for positions within the Board. If interested, send an email to [email protected] or [email protected]
Rhea announced the opening of nominations for SGA executive elections for the academic year 2021-22. If you would like to nominate yourself or someone else for an executive board position, go to https://tinyurl.com/y26hrvrk. Nominations will close on March 3, 2021 and elections will take place on March 31, 2021, with the results being announced the same evening at the SGA Senate Meeting.
Senator Benjamin Barber reported that some professors still held class sessions during the COVID study day on February 9, 2021. The names of these professors were taken to the University Faculty Council. If you or someone you know has a professor who is planning to hold classes on an upcoming COVID study day, send an email to [email protected]
Rhea announced the return of the Senator Spotlight recognition, which is a special way to highlight a Senator’s accomplishments every Senate meeting. This week’s Senator Spotlight went to Senator Ursula Hersh, for her extensive efforts in her projects to restore the UFarm and her initiative to establish a Women’s Center at Illinois Tech.