SGB encourages students: research board candidates

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Thomas Yang | Assistant Visual Editor

SGB President Zechariah Brown discusses next week’s SGB election at Tuesday’s weekly meeting.

By Anushay Chaudhry, Staff Writer

Student Government Board President Zechariah Brown opened SGB’s public meeting on Tuesday by encouraging people to start considering who should sit on next year’s board. 

SGB’s upcoming board election will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 25. Voting will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m on election day, with the results announced at SGB’s weekly meeting that day. 

“All of us as students have to make sure we’re looking at, analyzing and properly deciding which of the candidates should fill these roles for us,” Brown said. “There is a breadth of different ideas as well as experience that they are each coming from that really speaks to different points of the Pitt experience.”

Brown emphasized that students should seriously review candidate platforms before voting. Events such as Meet the Candidates and the presidential debate both have been recorded and uploaded to SGB’s Facebook page for students who were unable to attend. 

During board reports, Executive Vice President Anaïs Peterson discussed the meeting they attended with Dean of Students Kenyon Bonner regarding Pitt’s stance on being a more socially responsible investor in renewable energy sources.

Earlier this year, SGB passed a resolution unanimously demanding the University divest from fossil fuels by April 2020. However, Peterson said they are not hopeful of the University’s ability to meet that date.

“It’s disappointing to see both that the administration and the Board of Trustees are not following the resolution that SGB put out, as well as their complete disregard for the current state of our climate and how it’s affecting people in southwestern Pennsylvania,” Peterson said.

After the meeting, Peterson was asked about other steps, if any, that the University has taken to consider procedures regarding socially responsible investments. 

“The Board of Trustees will be voting on the socially responsible investment process on Feb. 28. If an issue has a large enough community concern, the chancellor can create an ad hoc committee to research the issue, or if it’s a pressing enough issue the board can vote on that issue,” Peterson said.

Board member Eric Macadangdang announced that the Pitt Planned Parenthood Club will be hosting an event called Zero-Waste Period. The event will be held on Feb. 21 from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Student Office of Sustainability located on the fifth floor of the William Pitt Union. The club, in collaboration with SGB and SOOS, will be distributing free, reusable menstrual cups and cloth pads to increase awareness about more sustainable options for menstrual products. 

“I see this event as a great event because it tackles two issues — period poverty and sustainability issues on campus and elsewhere,” Macadangdang said after the meeting. “I hope people turn out to the event to utilize these products and learn more about these issues.”

Brown announced that Market Central is hosting a Black History Month-themed dinner on Feb. 27 from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. After the meeting, Brown said SGB and Pitt Dining have been working with organizations like Black Action Society, African Students Organization and the Caribbean and Latin American Student associations to distribute free Market meal vouchers. Each student on campus, regardless of whether they have a meal plan or not, may receive one voucher. They can only be used on the day of the dinner. The event also counts for OCC credit.

Additionally, the last Chancellor’s Lunch, a routine meeting between SGB and the senior administration where issues of student concern and SGB’s initiatives are discussed, will take place. The date of the event has not yet been announced. According to Brown, topics of their last meeting included college affordability, the campus master plan and Pitt’s investments and alignment with sustainability and socially responsible investment procedures.

Brown encouraged students to suggest any questions or topics of concern using the “Fix It Pitt” tab on SGB’s website.

Club Requested allocations Approved allocations Purpose
Pitt Club Field Hockey $1,805.92 $1,805.92 Pitt Club Field Hockey is requesting for ground transportation and lodging to attend a tournament in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
Pittsburgh Club Baseball $3,473.08 $3,473.08 Pittsburgh Club Baseball is requesting for ground transportation to participate in a series of games in Plant City, Florida.
Pre-Medical Organization for Minority Students $2,523 $1,927 POMS is requesting for registration, ground transportation and lodging to attend a conference in Cleveland. The committee made cuts due to conference rules.
Korean Student Association $10,000 $9,800 KSA is requesting for honorarium to bring Youtuber David So to campus. The committee had serious concerns over the cost-benefit ratio and the overall scale and cost of the event and recommended to deny funding in full. The board voted to approve funding with revisions.
South Asian Student Association $1,809.47 $1,750.64 SASA is requesting for purchases and services at its Cultural Show event in Bellefield Hall. The committee made cuts due to purchases policies.
Political Science Student Association $3,804.58 $3,562.02 PSSA is requesting for ground transportation and lodging for a trip to Washington, D.C. The committee made cuts due to hotel room rules and a documentation issue.
Filipino Student Association $6,476.25 $6,421.41 FSA is requesting for honorarium, ground transportation and miscellaneous expenses for its Flores de Barrio event in the William Pitt Union. The committee made cuts due to purchases policies.
BM-3: Black Action Society $17,500 $0 BAS is requesting to modify their budget to bring Dominique Jackson to campus. Jackson is an author, actress, model and reality television star who the group hopes will appeal to an intersectional audience. The committee recommended to deny in full due to concerns about the cost-benefit ratio and feasibility of the event.

 

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