Senate Beat: Faculty Discourse

This week’s Senate Beat did not have a theme, and ended up having a much smaller audience than last week. It was particularly warm in the Student Union, though that might have been because I had just walked in from the freezing cold outside. 

Reporting on her committees, President Safi Zenger (‘24) mentioned that the Commencement Committee would be holding another meeting on Wednesday to narrow down the Commencement speakers. In terms of the Academic Success and Academic Support Committees, Zenger and Senator Kiana Cunningham-Rodriguez (‘23) reported that they had met with Associate Dean of Faculty Tamara Metz to discuss proposed changes around the advising program and new student registration, changes being discussed at the faculty meeting at the same time as this Senate meeting. 

“They’re proposing to move the registration for new students up by like two weeks,” Safi said, “so that it happens before you arrive on campus instead of during O-Week.” According to Steve Abrahão and Christy Martin from Academic Support and Services, the changes are intended to give new students a little more time to figure out what classes they’ll be taking, as well as more time to get their bearings. “If there’s a problem, they have a little more wiggle room,” said Safi. “If you have any particular feelings about advising,” said Senator Cunningham-Rodriguez, “they’re looking for student feedback about advising in general, and whether it should be done by professional staff or by a professor your first year at Reed.”

President Zenger and Student Body Vice Treasurer Nina Gopaldas (‘24) also met with the Quest last Wednesday night, where they discussed the possibility of adding another position to the Quest team. “They do a lot of work, and there used to be one more editor than there is now,” said Safi, “It’s something we’re figuring out alongside them.”

As a newly elected Vice President, Sean Brown (‘24) accompanied President Zenger at a meeting with President Audrey Bilger, Associate to the VP for Student Life Cathy Carrington, Student Life Vice President Karnell McConnell-Black, and Dean of Students Tawana Parks — Brown’s first time meeting with them as Vice President. 

According to Head Treasurer Wani Pandey (‘23), there were no Financial Committee (FINCOM) allocations this week. “If you received top 30 funding, that doesn’t mean you can’t come to FINCOM, but we ask that you exhaust your top 30 budget before you come to the committee,” they said. As of Public on Monday, the treasury team had only heard from 33 clubs, meaning there were still 20 clubs that could ask for funding. Top 30 clubs are still allowed to come and ask for allocations, but “We will take your budget into account with the fact that you’re a top 30 club,” warned Pandey. 

Treasurer Pandey also met with Computer User Services (CUS), who want students to be aware that there are new changes to the Google Drive storage limitations. CUS will be phasing out files that are owned by people who have graduated or left Reed College. “If you have access to files from people who have left Reed whose accounts have been suspended,” Pandey said, “you’re going to want to move those. Best to do that sooner rather than later.” 

Student Body Assistant Treasurer Anahi Sanchez Marcial (‘25) met with the director of the bookstore last week. They highlighted the importance of faculty being able to send out textbook requests on time, in order for students to be better informed about the costs of the textbooks through SOLAR and make an informed decision about them. “We’re trying to find a way to stress that out to faculty,” said Marcial. She plans to send out an email or reminder about it soon. 

According to Senator Meera Balan (‘26), the Title IX committee is trying to organize events so students are better informed about the policies. TItle IX policies are currently undergoing a review process with the Federal Government, so over the summer, Reed College will also have to change its Title IX policies a little bit. “We’re trying to figure out ways to get students involved with that, even over the summer,” added Senator Lindsay Worrel (‘25). 

Reportedly, other colleges have been having some issues with Titles III and IV as well, so Senate will be working on reviewing Reed’s policies on involuntary leave. “If you have policies that put extra barriers for students with disabilities, including mental health issues, to attend college, it would be a violation of section Title IV and the Americans with Disabilities Act,” said Senator Luiz Felipe Horta (‘25). The Senate will be checking the existing policies, and making sure they’re compliant.

With regards to changes in the House Advisor (HA) position requirements, Senator Worrel and Senator Horta met with Community Safety Director Gary Granger to talk about some of the new responsibilities, as well as how he’s been involved with it. According to Horta, Granger said he thought the most important part of the updated job description was “mainly doing checks around the building, checking that doors work and nothing is missing in the narcan box or anything.” 

Vice President Sean Brown met with the Student Committee on Diversity (SCOD) to discuss possible plans for helping introduce incoming students to HUM 110, as well as how to navigate more difficult conversations about race and respect in the classroom setting. As of now, they plan on possibly making an “iMovie,” which Senator Cunningham-Rodriguez later elaborated on. “We’re interested in having some sort of informational thing that goes out to HUM 110 about how to have really difficult conversations,” she said. “We think students come in and don’t know how to talk about these subjects, especially somewhere as academic as Reed.”

Additionally, Brown is also trying to schedule a meeting with the Assistant Dean of Institutional Diversity, Jessika Chi, to discuss finding another student space for students of color — specifically looking for an area for larger group meetings, rather than hangouts. 

The Bike Coop and Wage Review positions have already conducted their interviews, but the positions were not announced this Senate, as the chair of the Appointments Committee, Senator Jefferson Ratliff (‘25) was not in attendance. 

According to Senator Horta, Senate plans on cleaning up part of the bong loft, as a means of creating another student space. They will begin the cleaning process in order to see what’s worth keeping, and will then ask facilities to clean the rest of it.

As soon as Senate finished with their main business, they opened up the floor to the audience. In the audience, Ares Carnathan stood up and said, “Y’all have the fugliest logo for the Senate Public meetings.” While everyone laughed, they continued, “Can I please make a new logo and send it to you with the understanding that I will not get paid for that. It’s ugly, it’s so bad.” Senator Horta turned his laptop to show the audience the logo on his screen. The logo was, in fact, very bad. 

“I’d like it to go on record that I didn’t make it, nor anyone at this table made that. Never seen that in my life, I don’t know where it came from, I don’t know who’s behind it. That’s not me, that’s not us, that’s not who we represent,” announced President Zenger. With that, the Senate gladly accepted Carnathan’s offer to make a new logo.

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Senate Beat: It’s Election Season! – Quest
5 months ago

[…] Another member of the audience asked about the bulletin board currently outside the Honor Council room on the first floor of the Gray Campus Center. They would like the board to be updated, possibly by adding council members’ pronouns or photos to the board. The audience member also asked if there were any updates on Senate’s logo situation — the logo had previously been described as “fugly.” […]

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