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Saint Mary’s revamps student government

Ashley Charnley and Sarah Mayer | Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Student body vice president and chair of the Constitution Committee Sarah Falvey presented the newly amended Student Government Association (SGA) Constitution to the Board of Governance (BOG) Monday, which passed the new document by unanimous consent.

The new constitution eliminates BOG and transfers the BOG’s former responsibilities to SGA.

“I think the biggest change you will notice is that there will no longer be a BOG next year. Essentially, the SGA will be absorbing BOG,” Falvey said.

The changes also shortened the constitution.

“We cut it down from seventy pages to thirteen pages,” Falvey said.

The new constitution also states that a student can hold only one executive position during a school year.

“The idea behind that was to spread around kind of the wealth of the leadership on this campus, to encourage a lot of involvement, and also to prevent our students from getting overwhelmed in performing their duties to the best of their abilities,” Falvey said.

Now that the constitution has passed through BOG, it will now be presented to the student body for a vote. Students will be able to log onto their PRISM accounts from Tuesday morning until Monday, March 23 to place their votes, Falvey said.

“It’s not actually required that we send it to the student body, but the committee felt it was the right thing to do,” Falvey said.

If the constitution fails to be passed by a majority of the student body, then it will be considered “null and void” for this year and the next amendment process will be left up to next year’s committee, Falvey said.

Student body vice president Sarah Falvey presented her research regarding keeping the Student Center open until midnight on weekdays and 2 a.m. on weekends.

“We looked at peer institutions and what amenities and services they have,” Falvey said. “Some have post offices, game rooms, tanning salons and all kinds of things.”

Falvey is sending a letter to the director of Student Involvement, Patrick Daniel, proposing the changes to the Student Center after comparing Saint Mary’s to other women’s colleges who have longer student center hours.

Three Dance Marathon committee members presented two separate co-sponsorships. Sophomore Mary Reilly, a member of the technology and letter writing committee, sophomore Katie Fadden, a member of Executive Council and first year Erin Chastain, a member of the letter writing committee, asked for co sponsorships for paper, envelopes and stamps for the letter writing campaign.

“We ask each person to compile a list of addresses to send to their families,” Fadden said. “We raise money to Riley and people donate knowing all the money is going to Riley. We really want to keep the costs of stamps and paper down.”

The second co sponsorship was concerning night of the event costs.

“We are getting food donated but it does not cover the cost of all the food with teachers and Riley parents coming,” Fadden said.

Funds are needed for out-staffing security, building services to clean up and a tip for a Deejay.

Other BOG news:

uAdriana Rodriguez, representing the Student Diversity Board, announced that the Diverse Student Leadership Conference is this week. More students are registered this year than ever before.