Student Senate kicks off the fall semester

Student Senate kicks off the fall semester

Like any other governing body, the Goshen College Student Senate has its own constitution. 

In it is described the outline of the senate’s structure and procedures. It also includes an impeachment trial procedure — which may be useful information for those out there planning a revolt. Before it gets to that point though, there are several steps that students could take to reach out to their local Student Senate members. 

This year’s Student Senate consists of Khampha Stempel as president, Katja Norton as treasurer, Sharada Weaver as vice president, Debbie Richards as liaison for student organizations, and Madeline Smith Kauffman and Laura Miller as joint vice presidents of marketing, with Smith Kauffman filling the role in the fall semester and Miller stepping in for the spring.

Corie Steinke, director of student involvement, works as the advisor of Student Senate. 

Meetings are held on Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. in room 21 of the Administration Building and are open to the general student public — with the exception of the meeting where budgets for student organizations are decided upon. 

Student Senate’s main goal on campus has always been to find ways to create connections between students and the administration, faculty, and staff. This year, they’re hoping to come up with new ways to engage with the campus, said Steinke. 

Some strategies that the senate employed last year to gauge student interests and needs included doing office hours and having Open Spaces events for students to come and talk about their concerns. 

Stempel said, “Last year, one of the last projects we did was setting up an Open Space for the Student Athletic Advisory Council… and we wanted a wide range of students at this meeting, [in order to see] how we can better support the athletic community on our campus.”

Steinke echoed this sentiment, “SAAC is fairly new, and [Senate] wants to do a lot to support them.” 

It is expected that office hours and Open Spaces will continue this year, likely taking place in Java Junction. Additionally, the date for the fall semester State of the Student Address will be released soon. The State of the Student Address is a tradition that began last year in the hopes of being able to communicate the senate’s goals and accomplishments to the Goshen College student body. 

While Senate has just started back up again for the year, Stempel has high hopes for the group. “I want to see us get projects done — student led projects that people are excited about and we want to support them in that,” said Stempel. 

Their next few meetings in particular will be when goals for the year begin to form. 

“That includes gauging student needs and wants, and gauging how we need to work with administration to continue growing that relationship,” said Stempel. He’s hoping they will be able to spend time promoting student projects that people will be excited about and want to get behind. 

The deadline for applying for funding from student senate is Friday, Sept. 20 as the budget meeting will take place the following week.

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