Elizabeth Kaiser graphic
On Monday, Feb. 15 at 5 p.m., President Ben Behlke called this Student Senate meeting to order. Senator Zachary Adams took a roll call.
President Behlke introduced UW-Platteville Director of Sustainability Amy Seeboth-Wilson, who came to present on UW-Platteville’s recently approved solar array project.
Seeboth-Willson shared some project highlights and explained that the new solar panels will be located on five acres of the south-facing slope just west of Pickard Hall in Memorial Park. This was the most affordable location for the panels. Seeboth-Wilson reported that construction will begin in the spring of 2021.
The minutes from last week’s Student Senate meeting were then approved.
Behlke asked the senate to review a document of student services offices that are to be moved over the next four to five years. UW-Platteville is hoping to move most of these student services offices to a newly renovated Ottensman Hall in the future. Administrative Liaison Linda Mulroy-Bowden added that the university would like to move the majority of the student services offices on campus to the newly renovated Ottensman Hall to create a “one-stop-shop” for students.
Employed Students Advocacy Senator Caleb Besson reported on the latest Student Health Care Committee meeting which covered the campus’ COVID-19 numbers, the number of flu shots on campus and the increased use of University Counseling Services.
Next, Behlke opened discussion on the senate’s Pioneer Pause Day Resolution.
The resolution is meant to keep professors from assigning school work to be due or completed on Pioneer Pause Days.
Chief of Staff Zachary Adams, Director of Academic Affairs Verden and Women in Higher Education Advocacy Senator Lillian Sulli offered their opinions on the matter.
There was much debate on the subject of the resolution. The senate discussed a recent study they conducted which found that the majority of UW-Platteville students are uncomfortable emailing or meeting with their professors to ask for help or extensions. This data was considered in the conversation surrounding the resolution.
Director Verden stressed student health over everything. Vice President Kurstin Frey expressed support for having no work due on Pioneer Pause Days.
EMS Senior Senator Isabelle Holcomb expressed support for the expectation that people work on these days.
Behlke proposed a change to the resolution, compromising that assignments may be due on Pioneer Pause Days if they are open ahead of time.
The revised resolution was passed by the Student Senate. This revised resolution included recommended stipulations such as: assignments must be open two full days ahead of Pioneer Pause Days, and professors must send out reminders a full two days before Pioneer Pause Days.
Behlke then appointed Senators Lillian Dickerson and Daniel Piotrowski as senior senators for LAE (Dickerson) and BILSA (Piotrowski) respectively.
Behlke shared a COVID-19 letter he plans to send to members of Congress asking for college students to get direct stimulus checks and for the cancellation of $50,000 of student loan debt.
Vice President Frey reported that the application for the Director of Diversity and Inclusion position is open. The application can be found on PioneerLink and is due by Feb. 24. This individual serves as the liaison between Student Senate, University Administration and the Chief Diversity Officer on issues pertaining to inclusion, diversity, gender, civility and campus climate. They advise the Student Senate Advocacy Caucus, review and recommend campus policies related to inclusion and diversity and chair the Student Senate Inclusive Affairs Committee.
Mulroy-Bowden asked senators to remind their friends to be tested for COVID-19 on time in relation to the campus’ requirements, as around 3,200 students are delinquent on their necessary tests.
The meeting was then adjourned.