By Staff Writer Kylie Cooper.
This semester, the Student Government Association (SGA) plans to encourage a resolution to support educational funding statewide, improve the Student Fee Allocation Committee, and further develop its members’ leadership skills.
These main three goals will be carried out with SGA President Tyler Varda ‘19, Business Management (Leadership), at the forefront.
“One of the things that I’m going to present very soon to the SGA is a resolution to add a ballot question on the spring election that will ask if the student body would like to urge the Board of Trustees to endorse the Fund Our Future bills,” Varda said.
If approved by the Massachusetts legislature, these two bills will encourage an increase in funding to secondary and higher education.
“With the cost of education rising, I feel that it’s important that we urge the Board of Trustees to support this,” Varda said.
The SGA also seeks to restructure the Student Fee Allocation Committee (SFAC), which is how student groups and organizations obtain their funds.
The Center for Women, Gender, & Sexuality, the SAIL Office, and Moonlight Breakfast are just a few organizations and events that are funded because of the student fee.
There was a reduced amount of money to allocate this year, which led to the budget cuts for organizations.
Varda says the SFAC’s method of funding differs from the university’s method; thus, they do not work in parallel with one another.
“We realized we needed to change the SFAC to work with the university practices,” Varda said.
The SFAC is currently composed of all student members, including the upperclassmen class presidents, the SGA president and treasurer, and two members elected at large during the SGA spring elections, held around mid-April.
Continuing from their successful recruitment last semester, the SGA will also be internally focusing on their members’ professional growth.
So far, Varda has held a couple of leadership workshops for SGA members and actively tries to be available at any time on any day for members to ask him questions.
“With any organization, you want to recruit people, retain the people you have, and develop them into future leaders,” he said.
Upon becoming President, one of Varda’s long-term goals was to make people as knowledgeable as he could.
“I want to leave SGA in a better place than when I started with it,” Varda said.
In addition to Varda, two other SGA executive board members will be graduating this year.
Students who wish to become involved within the SGA don’t have to wait until the beginning of a new school year.
At their second meeting of this spring semester, four Senate seats were filled and two committee chairs were elected.
The internal elections for those positions may have passed, but students are always welcome to become class representatives.
As representatives must only attend any one meeting of their choice per week, the level of involvement is determined by the student.
All students are invited to attend SGA meetings. General body meetings are held every Monday at 6:00 PM in LIB 206.
The seven committee meeting dates, a packet to become a class representative, and all other information regarding the SGA may be found on umassdsga.com.
The SGA Office can be found on the second floor of the Campus Center.