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Leaders face stricter standards

Liz Harter | Tuesday, September 5, 2006

Saint Mary’s Board of Governance (BOG) officials voted to increase the grade point average requirement for those running for student government at their meeting Monday night.

“Right now you need to have a 2.5 GPA,” student body president Susan McIlduff stated. “We are thinking that this should be [increased] to 2.8 because that is the minimum GPA necessary to maintain the dean’s scholarship.”

McIllduff said the higher requirement is a standard that student government should aspire to.

“[This new rule] is not going to be a requirement of the [freshmen] because [every high school grades differently],” said elections commissioner Christin Molnar. “It will be a requirement that they maintain the GPA into their second semester.”

It was unclear whether or not an election would be necessary to choose new board members if freshmen officers have not met the GPA requirement by their second semester.

There was no opposition to the increased GPA, and the motion passed quickly.

After the discussion over the GPA increase, Residence Hall Association (RHA) president Amy Dardinger announced that RHA went on a safety walk with interim Security Director Dan Woods to discuss security issues on campus.

One of the main concerns was increasing lighting on campus and Woods agreed to place lights behind Holy Cross hall. Woods also said he will work with the grounds crew to improve existing lighting.

“A lot of the lighting on campus is dim, not because there aren’t lights, but because there are trees [obscuring] them,” Dardinger said.

Another problem area is the backpack rack outside the Noble Family Dining Hall.

Students leave their backpacks and laptop bags on the floor rather than on the bag racks, especially during the lunch rush.

This not only presents a fire hazard, but some students have reported thefts from their bags, Dardinger said.

“Between 12 and 1 p.m. there aren’t enough racks to put backpacks on,” sophomore class president Francesca Johnson said.

“I would love to see bags allowed in the dining hall,” Johnson said.

A brief discussion ensued on why students are not allowed to bring bags into the dining hall. Members debated if the rule should be changed due to theft and the limited space available to keep bags outside the dining hall.

Members agreed bags should be allowed in the dining hall, though BOG cannot make that decision and the issue will have to be discussed with Sodexho, the company that provides food for the College.

Commissioners also said the quality of food service this year has diminished. Though the posted hours for dinner are 4:30 to 7 p.m., members noted that some of the stations stop serving food before 7 and often take the food away.

Athletic commissioner Anne Cusack said some sports teams go to dinner after practice and don’t arrive at the dining hall until 6:45 pm. Since the food is put away early, the girls on sports teams are eating cereal multiple times a week for dinner, Cusack said.

McIlduff said she would look into the matter.