ASUA Senate details plans for semester
Associated Students of the University of Arizona Sen. Stefan Schmietenknop listens during an ASUA meeting in the Student Union Memorial Center on Aug. 24, 2016. ASUA approved their special election results and swore in their two newest members at their meeting on Nov. 9, 2016.
The Associated Students of the University of Arizona senators are working to make a smooth transition for newly elected college-specific senators, as well as completing their goals before their term is up.
A major difference in this year’s senate is the implementation of college-specific senators. Many senators have put a focus on clarifying and defining the roles of these new positions.
“The importance is representation from all sides of the spectrum and all the students,” said Matthew Lubisich, president of the senate. “A lot of representation is needed at the college level.”
Lubisich has met with all of the college-specific deans to build a foundation between the senators and the colleges.
Anna Reimers is one of the college-specific senators, representing the College of Education. She met with Ronald Marx, the College of Education dean, and together they have discussed the importance of having representation in ASUA. They are hoping to have the College of Education senator also sit in on the college’s council meetings.
Reimers explained that this year is a building year for the senate. The college-specific senators are figuring out what will work best for their colleges, because each college structure is different. She said the college-specific senators will be able to make more connections between the respective colleges and ASUA.
“I think it is a really good idea and it has a lot of potential,” Reimers said. “We are focusing on what we want future candidates to run off of.”
Reimers explained that ASUA is hoping to have 17 college-specific senators next year and only three at-large senators for more representation throughout campus.
Reimers, along with other senators, are working on a transition meeting for the newly elected senators in May. This meeting will better define what each college-specific senator will be responsible for and what they can build from. The goal is to provide a smoother transition for the new senators.
The hope is to bridge the gap between ASUA and the rest of the student population. A majority of the senators are also working to increase awareness of ASUA elections to get more students involved.
Lubisich explained that his worry that senators may lose focus during the spring semester. But he said he thinks that by publishing their progress reports students will be able to hold the the senators accountable.
Other projects the senators have been working on include the second year of the “I Will” campaign, which will be held the first week of April. Senators are also wanting to focus on sexual assault prevention, inclusivity of individuals with disabilities, increasing the number of honor’s classes and the implementation of a rest center in the libraries.
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