SGB to finalize naming guideline proposal by end of week


Romita Das | Staff Photographer

SGB provided updates on ongoing projects, including new club naming guidelines and installing free menstrual product dispensers in various bathrooms around campus, at Tuesday’s public meeting.

By Emily Drzymalski, Staff Writer

Student Government Board provided updates on several ongoing initiatives at their meeting Tuesday night, including the launch of board member Eric Macadangdang’s initiative to install free menstrual product dispensers in bathrooms around campus.

He made the issue part of his campaign platform during last year’s elections, and said during his report he was proud that the initiative has made headway, with 23 tampon and pad dispensers now installed around campus with the help of facilities management and the Period Project through the Graduate School of Public Health.

Macadangdang added that SGB is footing the bill for two additional dispensers to be located in the men’s bathrooms on the main and lower floors of the William Pitt Union.

“This is just a step in a more inclusive direction to make sure that this amazing program is serving a wider audience,” Macadangdang said.

During his president’s report, SGB President Zechariah Brown provided an update on the ongoing effort to preserve the names of independent student organizations in the wake of updated Student Organization Resource Center naming guidelines.

SORC announced in late August that beginning fall 2020, its registration guidelines would prohibit the names of independent student organizations from including University trademarks or wordmarks like “Pitt” and “Panther,” instead encouraging clubs to use phrases such as “at Pitt” or “at the University of Pittsburgh.”

Brown said at last Tuesday’s meeting that the board’s proposal is to grandfather current organizations that have been on campus longer than the pre-existing, approximately decade-old naming guidelines have been in effect. All remaining organizations would have to change their names, but would be allowed to sell any merchandise they have already purchased to try and prevent any large financial losses.

Brown said he met Friday with Vice Provost and Dean of Students Kenyon Bonner and talked about his proposal. Bonner will be providing Brown with “hard numbers” for how long the pre-existing naming guidelines have been in effect.

He said the board’s proposal for how student organizations can keep their existing names is currently unfinished, but expects for it to be completed by the end of the week and sent to Bonner.

“The proposal is being written,” Brown said. “Of course with sickness and student life, there has been a couple days of a delay, but it will be written.”

SGB member Lynn Dang also provided an update on her open education resources initiative. Dang said she and SGB’s academic affairs committee are working to host a conference to discuss the different ways to utilize OERs with Teaching Partners, a community that engages faculty who use the University Center for Teaching and Learning’s resources to support and enhance their teaching practice.

Judicial Committee Chair Grace Nelson also provided an update on the work she and her committee are doing regarding University policy about excuses for missed work and absences for religious reasons. The Pitt News reported last month on difficulties that Jewish students face when making up missed work or absences due to observing High Holy Days.

She said the committee is in the information-gathering phase, and asked that students approach the committee to discuss both “good and bad” experiences.


Student Slovak Club requested $2,417.79 for the 29th Annual Slovak Heritage Festival. The allocations committee recommended to deny in full, but the board approved $1,779.99 and denied $637.80.

Muslim Students Association requested $4,145 to bring poet Amal Kassir to campus for an event. The board approved $4,121.46 and denied $23.54.

The club baseball team requested $9,426.75 for new uniforms, which the board denied in full.

The club cross country team requested $2,800 for a meet in Frederick, Maryland. The board approved $2,700 and denied $100.

Men’s Water Polo Club requested $2,000 to host the College Water Polo Association National Championships at Pitt. The board denied in full.

Mastana Fusion Dance Club requested $1,528 for a competition in Austin, Texas. The board approved in full.

Hindu Student Council requested $3,576.44 for their Nov. 2 Diwali Show event. The board approved $3,426.44 and denied $150.