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Thursday January 21st

Undergraduate Student Senate plans to increase visibility for student government

<p>The 99th Undergraduate Student Senate met Tuesday to discuss amendments to the Student Code.</p>
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The 99th Undergraduate Student Senate met Tuesday to discuss amendments to the Student Code.

The 99th Undergraduate Student Senate met on Tuesday to discuss unfinished business of the preceding meeting, including amendments to three parts in the Student Code.

What happened?

Undergraduate Student Senate member Tarik Woods began by discussing new amendments to Title I of the Student Code. These changes are focused on bringing new members and positions to the Undergraduate Student Government and possibly including seats for most popular majors and large cultural and ethnic groups on campus.

Woods also spoke on the amendments to Title II, which would reinstate job descriptions that had been removed in the past and Title III, which explains amendments to the point level system regarding elections.

After each title was introduced, the floor was open for senators to comment on the proposed amendments and offer input on more revisions to the titles. 

Who spoke?

Each title was introduced by Speaker of the Undergraduate Senate Katharine Shriver, who invited the senators and committee chairpeople, if they were present, to speak on the amendments.

Woods discussed his proposed amendments to Title I, which includes adding more seats in the senate to make it larger and more inclusive. 

“One thing that several universities have done, mostly in the Northeast and a few southern schools have done like Auburn, LSU, etc. is they’ve started implementing senates that include things that would translate to UNC’s version of BSM, CHispA, Native American inclusion organizations, all different background and inclusion groups on campus,” Woods said. “I’m sure they would love to send a member as a voting representative to the senate.”

Shriver expressed three goals for the senate — to know the Student Code and enforce it, increase visibility of the Undergraduate Student Government on campus and be proactive advocates for issues pertaining to the UNC community.

“I think one of the main problems about senate is that not a lot of people know about it and I think if a lot more people got involved, it would become super well-known on campus,” she said. “I feel like if people actually knew areas and avenues to come, instead of just coming here for money and if they knew we could listen and talk to them and listen to bills we could possibly create, I think that would be really good.”

Why was this meeting important?

In addition to discussing the amendments to the Student Code, senate members Yonel Admasu and Rachel Augustine suggested fostering a better working relationship with The Daily Tar Heel and emphasizing the need for clarity and transparency between the newspaper and the Undergraduate Student Government.

“We need to be mindful in the fact that the DTH and us are supposed to have a little bit of a conflicting view just because the media is supposed to check us, so I definitely think we need a better relationship with the DTH and all of Student Government does, but I also want the DTH to check us because I think that’s very important,” Augustine said.

When do they meet again?

The senate committees will meet on April 25. 

university@dailytarheel.com 

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