Student Association

SA to let students vote on diversity affairs position on upcoming ballot

Frankie Prijatel | Staff Photographer

SA President Aysha Seedat also announced that $10,000 will be allocated for undergraduate research this summer.

The Student Association met Monday night in Watson Theater to discuss the establishment of a director of diversity affairs within SA, the sponsoring of undergraduate research and the buses sponsored by the Division of Student Affairs to bring Syracuse University students to the Final Four basketball games in Houston and Indianapolis.

SA voted during Monday’s meeting to put the approval of the position of director of diversity affairs on the ballot for the coming election so that the student body will have the power to decide whether this position should be created.

SA debated during the meeting whether it would be better to have one person direct diversity affairs or if it would be more effective to have the job done by a committee. The assembly did not come to a decision and concluded that there is still more to discuss regarding how the position would work.

The specifics of the job will be discussed more by SA in the upcoming weeks.

“I think the ideal person for this job would be a leader who is passionate about diversity and inclusion on this campus,” said SA Vice President Jane Hong. “And whether that’s an assembly rep, who has been in this organization for years, or someone outside of it who wants their first year of experience in SA.  Regardless, if you’re qualified, you’re qualified.”

Also at the meeting, SA President Aysha Seedat said SA will continue to sponsor undergraduate research. SA is planning to allocate $10,000 for students to conduct research this summer, she said.

Seedat added that this year the Office of the Provost and the Office of Research have committed money to the sponsorship program, which means the amount of money committed to the cause will be about double what it was last year.

Students will be able to fill out applications in order to apply for this money soon, Seedat said.

Last week, the Division of Student Affairs sponsored three buses to Houston and one bus to Indianapolis to give students the opportunity to attend the Final Four games for men’s and women’s basketball teams, respectively.

The students who went to the women’s game in Indianapolis were given complimentary tickets to the championship game on Tuesday.
Seedat attended the Final Four game in Houston and said she was pleased that the Division of Student Affairs was able to sponsor the buses. She recalled that buses to the men’s Final Four in Atlanta were provided in 2013, her freshman year, and added that she was happy a similar service could be provided this year.

“The student section looked pretty packed from what I saw,” Seedat said.

Seedat added that she has received a lot of positive feedback from students who went on the trips.

“A lot of students told (me) that this trip made their experience at Syracuse,” Seedat said. “For them to be able to be in that arena … every time that Syracuse made a shot the crowd went wild.”

In regard to SA’s bike-share program, Hong said it has been confirmed that 10 bikes will be purchased for the program. Mello Velo, a bicycle company, has confirmed that it will be able to check up on the bikes on a minimum biweekly basis, Hong said, adding that she hopes the initiative will be officially launched the first week of the fall 2016 semester.

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