Student Senate hopes to bring louder voice to campusAuthor: • Oct 18th, 2012 • Category: features
It is solely the women of Goshen College who owe thanks to the force responsible for supplying their bathrooms with feminine products. But if the group behind the gift has anything to say about it, soon all of campus will have something to be grateful for.
Every Wednesday, nine students meet in the AD building to discuss tunnel dedications, ice hockey tables and bikes racks, all in the name of campus betterment.
The group is Student Senate, made up of four cabinet members voted in by the previous year’s student body, and five members at-large. Hans Weaver, one member of the cabinet, leads the meetings.
“Our purpose is to be a voice for the student body,” said Weaver. “We are a direct link from the students to the administration to voice complaints, concerns and improvements.”
This voice wasn’t always so prominent on campus, but this year’s Senate is looking for ways to be louder. While there has always been a Student Senate, it hasn’t been well-published in previous years. The newest leaders want to change that.
The people behind the change are the cabinet members, including Weaver, a senior; Jonathan Hershberger, a junior; Rachel Smucker, a sophomore; and Aradhana Roberts; a junior. The members at large are Niles Graber-Miller, a junior; Ben Shelly and David Zehr, both first-years; Luis Lopez, a junior; and Caleb Longnecker, a sophomore. Bill Born, vice president of student life, and Launa Rohrer, associate dean of students, take turns overseeing the meetings.
Each week, the group makes proposals for new initiatives to different committees or Bill Born, and discuss what changes or improvements can be made all over campus. Once an initiative is approved, Senate works to carry the change through.
This fall, Senate has equipped nine women bathrooms with feminine products and created a new group website to spread the word. Other future ideas include putting printers and washing machines in the junior/senior apartments, placing more bike racks around campus, improvements to Schrock plaza, installation of quarter dispensers for laundry, creating an underpass mural and adding campus study spaces.
“We hope to get many of these initiatives completed so that we can start with new initiatives next semester,” said Weaver.
Smucker said, “Senate can make a difference. We are the bridge between students and faculty, so please feel free to contact us with ideas, suggestions, or goals you have in mind. This is our school, so let’s make it the best that it can be together.”
Check out the Senate’s new website, officially launching today, at www.goshen.edu/senate.