Student Government of Seattle University Representative Assembly Meeting
Meeting Minutes January 28, 2015 Student Center 210 at 6:00 p.m.
I. Call to Order
Raquel calls the meeting to order at 6:02 PM II. Roll Call (initial on the line)
Eric Sype, President _________
Raquel Davalos, Executive Vice President _________ Matthew Kelly, Vice President of Finance _________
Meggie Green, Vice President of University Affairs _________ Luke Larsen, Senior Representative _________
Manuel Siguenza, Junior Representative _________ Palmyra Jackson, Sophomore Representative_________ Owen Goetze, At-Large Representative _________ Sarah Coluccio, Athletic Representative
Monica Chan, Multicultural Representative _________ Lynn Doan, Commuter Representative _________ Jordan Murakami, Transfer Representative _________ Jaden Phan, International Representative __ ___
Braden Wild, Students with Disabilities Representative __absent____ Jarrod Gallagher, Nontraditional Representative _________
Isheeta Tewari, Freshman Representative _________ Tanish Bhojwani, Freshman Representative _________ III. Approval of the Minutes
Motion passes unanimously with abstention from Braden Wild. IV. Public Comment – None
V. Guest Speakers – None VI. Old Business
VII. New Business
REPA 20150128 Approving Funds (Finance Committee) - Matthew: Budget presentation attached.
- Jordan: Would it be appropriate for UFC to be here?
- Eric: If the club can’t present to the finance committee, then the present to Rep. Assembly.
- Matthew: This is our presentation of our recommendation. I seek a motion to approve these funds. - Monica: So moved.
- Myra: Seconded.
- Raquel: The motion passes unanimously, with abstention from Braden who is absent. REPA 20150128 SGSU & Student Engagement (Myra+ Steering Committee)
- Myra: We’ve been meeting regarding the Student Engagement forum. The purpose is to reach out and bring students into SGSU.
- Raquel: This is a list of things we’ll be doing. Steering decided, with Myra, to find new or stronger ways to connect with our constituents. Some of those things include public comment and First Friday
Doughnuts and improving our office space, etc. This is what we’ve come up with so far.
- Myra: It’s important that we’re productive in the office and cultivating a space in which our constituents feel comfortable coming to talk to us.
- Luke: Not only is our job to reach out to people, but we need to be proactive as well. If you overhear something, then you have a responsibility, as a representative, to bring that to the group. Be conscious of the opportunities to better Seattle U that are constantly around you.
- Raquel: Myra sent out an email about email processes. There are other instructions as well. We talked about posting the agenda outside the office by the door.
- Meg: In our UA meeting last week, we discussed raising awareness for public comment.
- Owen: I like the idea of using the facebook page more generally, especially for raising awareness for public comment.
- Eric: Izzy and I are going to start a strategic communication plan to get people interested in the We the Redhawks petition program.
- Raquel: We just wanted to bring this to the group, so that everyone’s on the same page. REPA 20150128 Merit Based Scholarships (Eric Sype)
- Eric: Last Friday I was in a Board of Regents meeting. They meet four times a year. Connie Kanter spoke about finances of the university. Marilyn Crone spoke about enrollment. Josh Krawczyk came and spoke regarding retention. He’s going to come speak to this group later this quarter. One thing that I noticed from his presentation was that he had a graph that showed two bodies of students: non-transfer students and then transfer students. For each of those groups there was an EFC, which is Estimated Family Contribution, which is how financial aid estimates how much money you get. If your EFC was greater than 50% then there was a number for the percentage of those students what were retained and that’s at a very high level. Our retention has improved since the beginning of the year. And then there was the opposite of that, which was if your EFC is lower than 50% of tuition. Basically, students of lower and higher socioeconomic levels. On both groups of students, transfers and non-transfers, students who were in lower socioeconomic group (families with a less than 50% EFC), there was a 6-8% drop in retention. Which doesn’t sound like a huge number, but actually is. It’s one of the main reasons we’re in the financial situation we are now. At the end of the presentation, I brought up looking at how we do merit based scholarships at this university. Currently, everyone gets a merit based scholarship and it’s tied to GPA and SAT/ACT scores. With those two factors playing into how merit based aid is
distributed, I’m wondering if there’s a way to change the way these scholarships are distributed because, as they stand, I believe they play into complex systems of privilege. I’m wondering if we’re giving a lot of aid to students who don’t necessarily need it. Originally that was kind of shot down, but I’ve briefly connected with some people and we’re talking about it some more. Possibly introduce a way for students to return their scholarships to the university if they don’t necessarily need them. As I was walking out with Connie Kanter, she mentioned that she’s interested in looking into seeing if the
numbers match up with what we’re talking about. I described my interaction with the Naeff Scholarship program. What are your thoughts?
- Monica: The 6-8% of student you talked about, are they middle class or upper-middle class? - Eric: The 6-8% are students whose EFC is less than 50%.
- Meg: Clarify?
- Eric: If your EFC is lower, then you’re going to get more financial aid. - Meg: People with a lower EFC are retained at a lower rate.
- Luke: It takes into account your family’s income with regard to paying for school. - Myra: Students who can pay for school should donate their scholarship back? - Eric: That was a suggested idea.
- Monica: Did you say there’s a correlation between higher socioeconomic status, higher merit based scholarships, and higher SAT/ACT scores and GPAs?
- Monica: Does SU use affirmative action? - Nikki: I don’t think so.
- Myra: Did anyone talk about lowering tuition…?
- Eric: *laughs* There was a slide about that in Josh’s presentation.
- Owen: There’s also the idea that if you attend a more expensive school then it’s a better school. - Matthew: Has there been a conversation about need-based SU Grants?
- Eric: Not in relation to merit-based aid.
- Jaden: Are you just talking about merit-based aid? - Eric: Yes.
- Meg: If they looked into how much money people of different EFCs are paying/receiving in scholarship, do they take into account all scholarships?
- Eric: I think we need to see if there’s a discrepancy in how merit-based aid is being distributed. - Meg: If a change were to happen, when would it go into effect?
- Eric: It would take even longer than Tobacco Free.
- Monica: If you apply to a state school in California, then you don’t get any merit-based aid. It’s all based on the FAFSA.
- Eric: I believe that’s true across the board.
- Izzy: Have any of the conversations surrounded the incremental adjustment regarding merit-based aid reflecting the change in tuition?
- Eric: Not that I know of. Noted.
- Raquel: We should look into how other universities go about distributing their merit-based aid. - Eric: I think this could have implications on retention. Another huge factor is that our peer-eleven
institutions lost a lot of students to Portland State University because they have a higher discount rate. They gave more money than anyone else.
- Manuel: Who are the Peer-Eleven?
- Izzy: Gonzaga, PSU, Santa Clara, USF, Loyola LA, Chapman, etc.
- Manuel: There’s a pattern I’ve noticed of all of my friends who have dropped out of SU while I’ve been here have been people of color. That might be something to take into account.
- Eric: Depending on the results of the Campus Climate Survey, we could be starting this conversation at an opportune moment.
- Monica: Wouldn’t Portland State handle their finances differently because they’re a state school..? - Eric: Excuse me, I meant to say University of Portland which is private.
- Matthew: What’s the next step?
- Eric: Bring Michelle Murray up to speed. Talk with Connie Kanter. And maybe a work group. Who’s interested? I would now like to seek a motion to add an agenda item.
- Manuel: Moved. - Luke: Seconded.
- Raquel: Motion passes unanimously.
REPA 20150128 A Decade of Excellence (Eric Sype)
- Raquel: Nikki has handled 6 election seasons, 105 rep assemblies, 13 SGSU retreats, advised 90 SGSU people (plus Red Zone), 13.5 quarters at SU, 670 one-on-ones approximately.
- Eric and Raquel: *presents a series of photos*
- Nikki: I don’t know that I believe those numbers… But I’ve loved every second of this. I feel so privileged to be a part of your live. I’ve learned so much from all of you.
VIII. Officer Reports: Officer Reports:
A) Eric Sype-President:
a. Homecoming: I’m on the planning committee and I wanted to break the mold that we have developed as being very athletics oriented. We’ve done a lot of improvements. The events begin next Thursday and go through the weekend.
b. Dance Marathon Promotion Video: Friday at 2pm. I’ll send an email. c. Met with Tim Marron.
B) Raquel Davalos- Executive Vice President a. Exec. Update:
i. Owen requested monies for the Ethiopian food event. ii. Jaden requested monies for the gift.
iii. Appropriations debrief.
b. Doodle for the Events List will be coming! c. Scheduling guest speakers.
d. International dinner on Saturday. e. Sign up for one-on-ones.
C) Matthew Kelly- Vice President of Finance a. Presentation.
b. One-sheet for accessing executives. c. Budget updates.
D) Meg Green- Vice President of University Affairs
a. Jarrod and I met with Matt Feldmyer to discuss bikes, last week. b. Academic Assembly was super packed.
i. Program revisions. ii. Program terminations. iii. New programs.
c. Non-tenure track faculty member discussed reasons against unionization. E) Representatives
a. Luke Larsen, Senior Representative:
i. U-Rec public comment: cut students hours. Didn’t fire any students. b. Manuel Siguenza, Junior Representative:
i. Junior questionnaire. ii. Play music in the office!
c. Palmyra Jackson, Sophomore Representative:
i. Jordan and I are meeting on Tuesday, re: transgender inclusion on campus. ii. Ideas for primary games
d. Owen Goetze, At-Large Representative: i. Budget proposal to Exec.
ii. Ethiopean event.
e. Monica Chan, Multicultural Representative: i. Survey, please!
f. Lynn Doan, Commuter Representative: i. Nothing to report.
g. Jordan Murakami, Transfer Representative: i. Meeting with commuter-transfer life people! h. Jarrod Gallagher, Non-traditional Rep:
i. Murphy Garage bike enclosure on the 5th floor of the parking garage. i. Jaden Phan, International Representative:
i. Thank you for money for gift!
j. Braden Wild, Students with Disabilities Representative: i. Absent.
k. Sarah Coluccio, Athletic Representative: i. Special Olympics event in April! l. Isheeta Tewari, Freshman Representative:
i. Meeting with Tim Leary
ii. Working on 12th and Jefferson Event m. Tanish Bojwani, Freshman Representative:
i. Talking with photography club about photographers for Senior Soiree ii. Talking with gym people about safety issue.
n. Izzy Gardon, External Chief of Staff: i. This is Seattle U event.
ii. FQ report is live iii. Graphics work as well iv. Updated website.
o. Margaret Quartararo, Internal Chief of Staff: i. Met with Helaina Sorey!
a. Nichole Robison: i. Advising shift. b. Kayla Zobel:
i. Nothing to report. IX. Committee Reports
a. Tabling for new question of “This is Seattle U,” the week after next. (10th and 12th) b. Fr. Ely Forum, last week of February.
a. Retreat: difficult to schedule.
b. Idea: last part of retreat would be going to the Drag Show (March 14th) C. Finance:
a. 28 appropriations requests
b. April 11th Appropriations meeting is being rescheduled because it conflicts with iLead. D. University Affairs:
a. Discussed budget ideas. X. Announcements
- Eric: Next Tuesday, there’s a table at the Clubs and Involvement Fair for SGSU - Raquel: Drag Show is April 10th
- Matthew: If you’re planning to attend the International Dinner, come get your tickets after the meeting. - Izzy: Shout out to Myra who is on the Homecoming court!