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Saint Mary’s Government in Brief

Megan Loney and Alicia Smith | Thursday, December 10, 2009

 Residence Hall Association plans events 

The Residence Hall Association (RHA) has been busy this semester with a number of interesting activities and initiatives.

The Health and Wellness and Service committees successfully hosted an “80s Workout Night,” a fitness class styled after aerobics classes of the 1980s and encouraged participants to dress accordingly. They also organized a Habitat for Humanity service project and a Santa Breakfast at the Center for the Homeless with the help of Office of Civil and Social Enagagement (OCSE), RHA president Cristen Dalessandro said.  

Each hall council has been extremely active, Dalessandro said.  

“So far this year, all the hall councils have been extremely active and have hosted successful events in their halls including Desserts with Doctor Mooney, Hall Mass, Notre Dame game watches, mani-pedi study breaks and ornament decorating,” she said.  

For the upcoming semester, RHA has begun planning for the annual Little Sibs Weekend on April 10 and the All-School Formal on Feb. 27.  

Other than that, RHA is in the process of revising the College’s Constitution. The revised version will be in place for next year’s board. 

Dalessandro said she is positive this year’s RHA is fulfilling its duty to Saint Mary’s students. 

“Our reason for existing is basically to bring a little happiness to the lives of students,” Dalessandro said.

Student Activities Board prepares events

The Student Activity Board (SAB) has worked consistently throughout the year to plan a variety of events for students to participate in. 

Their opening event was Jamaica Shaka, an annual event which featured a 1980s cover band as well as a hula-hoop contest and luau-style food. Another annual event, Twilight Tailgate, also took place this semester. 

“This year, we showed ‘The Proposal’ on an outdoor screen on Library Green. We served free popcorn, caramel apples, cotton candy and slushies,” Michele Peterson, SAB president, said.

SAB also offered a performance by poet Gabriela Garcia Medina. Another event SAB sponsored was a pumpkin-carving contest near Halloween. 

Currently, SAB is planning a gingerbread house-decorating contest, which will be held in conjunction with the Alumnae Association of  South Bend.  

SAB plans to hold other events throughout the school year including a charity concert to benefit the Student Athletic Advisory Committee Belles for Africa program. 

Other events SAB would like to present include additional movie nights, as well as their largest event for the spring semester, SMC Tostal.

SAC establishes mission statement

In addition to organizing the annual “majors of the week” designed for each department to promote their majors, the Student Academic Council established a mission statement for the Women Honoring Women Award this semester.  

Applications to nominate faculty and staff members for the award will go out early next semester.  The awards ceremony will be in March, Megan Griffin, Student Academic Council representative and student body vice president, said. 

The Student Academic Council is focusing on textbook affordability next semester, Griffin said.  

“Basically, we are looking at how much students really spend on textbooks at Saint Mary’s and trying to establish alternative methods to help students not have to pay so much,” Griffin said. “We are also looking at how educated students are about financial aid and whether that’s something that needs to be improved.” 

The Student Academic Council just passed a resolution on electronic transcripts, which states “that the Office of the Registrar should offer official electronic transcripts as an alternative to the traditional paper transcript.”

 The Student Academic Council will present the resolution to Student Government Association on Jan. 11.

Board of Trustees elects new members

The Saint Mary’s College Board of Trustees elected four new members to the committee in June.   The newest members of the Board are Sr. Maureen Grady, Rose Marie Lopez Jones, Almira Wilson Cann and Carmen Murphy. Each member will serve a three-year term. 

Senior Kristle Hodges will serve a one-year term on the Board as a student representative. 

The Board of Trustees held one of their four annual meetings in October.  

The Board is responsible for major decisions that affect the entire college, including tuition.  

The Board’s approval of a five percent increase in tuition and a three percent increase in room and board for the 2009-2010 academic year was publicized in a press release by the College in March. 

No information has been released about the Board’s current activity. 

The next meeting of the Board of Trustees will be held in February.