Organization Council: Reformatting, specialization on the horizon

Sen. Mark Reiter and myself have been doing a lot of planning for the upcoming semester. We are very excited to begin to reformat and add the Organizational Council Committee, which will go into effect next fall. After the decision and debate last semester, the Student Senate agreed to add some changes to the Organizational Council.

My position will no longer be a senator position; however, we are increasing the amount of involvement from organizations. This new committee will be composed of several members of organizations in various groupings such as recreational groups, professional groups, special interest groups, etc. The goal of this new committee is to increase the specialization and coverage of issues important to all organizations on campus. This committee will allow Student Senate to better listen, adapt and change policies regarding organizations due to the increase involvement of several members all concerned with the OC instead of just two. The new committee will be about 6-8 members, who will further be divided into smaller groups to establish a chain of command and communication.

In addition to accurately informing organizations of this change, I was excited to attend the Spring President’s Summit with Sens. Reiter, Schwartz, and Jennings. The format for this semester’s meeting  changed, and I believe for the better. There was various sessions outlining the key areas of interest and concern for organizations discussed in last semester’s OC meetings. That opportunity  gives organizations more timely and important information relating to funding requests, the Community Website, resources and forms, transitions, and event advertising to name a few. Our goal now is to recap and submit additional resources to groups that were unable to attend.

While the previous two items will take most of my time, it is always my goal to hear concerns from the OC as a whole. I will embark on reaching out to several organizations that have not been as actively involved or want more communication to and from Senate. I will be setting up individual meetings with these organizations or President’s to hear their thoughts and discuss the upcoming changes for the position. Senator Reiter and myself are looking at potentially scheduling another set of OC meetings in March to further outline the changes and ensure that all organizations have the knowledge to recommend a member to apply for one of the new committee member spots.

In my other capacity to assist with the Senate’s 50 goals, I will be working with several Senators to address the need for responsible energy use on campus. We will address alternatives to current methods as well as identify how to better use the systems we have in place. Also, with the new changes to the Senate’s bylaws, I plan on working with President Karaz and others to implement a new election timeline and process to incorporate these changes. In all, I am very excited about this semester and look forward to getting started!

– Sen. Alex Shaner