ASUA Senate approves funding for summer scholarship
Sen. Michael Mazzella (second left) briefs the Associated Students of the University of Arizona Senate on the tobacco ban proposal at the senate meeting on Wednesday in the Student Union Memorial Center. Included are (left to right) Sen. Alex Barbee, Sen. Christopher Chavez.
The ASUA Senate voted to approve a summer scholarship proposal available for UA students at its meeting Wednesday.
The scholarships will be available for this summer and the applications will go out today. Senators debated whether they should add additional scholarships or maintain the original three scholarships included in the proposal.
“We should stick with three summer scholarships, because we have other funding requests that we should abide to,” Sen. Elana Roeder said, “so maybe the next senate class would be able to add an extra scholarship or two.”
After further discussion, the three summer scholarships for summer 2014 were approved.
The senate also discussed the possible expansion of the study abroad program in Israel. Roeder said she had an amazing experience when she went to Israel when she was in high school.
“The UA has the second-best Hebrew program, right behind Brandeis University, which says a lot,” Roeder said. “Therefore, I feel the Jewish population at UA would be very appreciative, and it would be very nice to send them there. This expansion wouldn’t do much for the school, but it would be nice to show the Jewish student population that ASUA has their backs.”
Sen. Grant Suman agreed, saying ASUA has difficulty funding a lot of these trips with its budget, but that this trip would be good for the UA.
“It is a fantastic trip to fund for the experience, culture, et cetera at our school,” Suman said.
The senate voted to approve the expansion for the Israel study abroad program.
Lastly, a proposal for a radio grant from Suman was brought up as an informational item. The radios would help the University of Arizona Police Department communicate with the Tucson Fire Department’s PC Wind system.
The radios were described as useful for the police departments for communicating on-scene conditions. For example, if the radios were contaminated with blood or a similar substance, the police department could put them into a solution and the radios would still function. The department is asking for two radios: one to use and one for backup. If the funding is not granted, it will not be able to communicate with the fire department and other police departments, because all of them had switched over as of Tuesday.
Suman said the senate would like to provide UAPD with at least one radio but cited budget concerns.
“We are running a tight budget, so we would like to see what the extra pieces are about,” Suman said. “I feel that it is necessary in the immediate future, because if they can’t hear everyone, they can’t really report to anything, and we shouldn’t shy away from this issue just because of funding.”
Suman said a cheaper version could be an option given their budget.
Roeder said the radios would be a good investment for the UA community.
“We were elected by the students for the students,” Roeder said, “and I don’t think there is a better way to spend money than protecting the students.”
The issue of whether to fund for the radios will be considered next week.