Our meeting this week involved the work of several senators’ individual projects. Benyam Ashenafi ’15 is currently working on getting hammocks and picnic tables for the freshman quad and other similar areas around campus. Benyam explained that Dean Fatemi and the administration were not in favor of hammocks because they felt hammocks clashed with the overall appearance of the campus. However, Benyam did point out that the Student Activities Office would be willing to fund twelve picnic tables. In our meeting, we discussed whether or not the Senate should fund more tables for the quad. Benyam proposed adding an additional four tables — adding up to a sum of sixteen. Many senators thought twelve was sufficient — more than enough. Personally, I don’t see the need for picnic tables on the freshman quad. I think students enjoy the open space. Jasjaap Sidhu’14 explained that students often use the open space to play Frisbee and catch.
We also voted on the language of a referendum that will be sent to the student body so be on the look out for that! Students will be asked to vote on whether or not they would support the funding of 12,500 dollars towards the installation school ID card readers outside each practice room of James and Stearns. Dvij Bajpai’15 along with Jeffrey Feldman’15 (a non-senator) proposed this project so that students interested in practicing music can more easily access the rooms without the hassle of getting keys from Keefe Campus Center that only work for one room — a room that may often be being used by another student. The card readers would work for students who sign up to use the rooms. Dvij and Jeff, who are both members of the Arts Committee, proposed this idea in an attempt to promote music and arts on campus — an area that both feel is lacking at Amherst. I was one of the many who voted in support of this initiative. I think it’s a step in the right direction. Amherst needs some more creativity and the installation of these card readers will allow students passionate about music to more easily use a resource (the practice rooms) that is available on campus.
Noah Gordon’14, our newly elected Secretary, proposed a set of amendments that are intended on preventing the election issues of the past two weeks from happening again. These amendments were voted on and passed unanimously. Speaking of elections, reelections for President and Treasurer and the runoff elections for Vice-President and Judiciary Council Chair are happening all day Wednesday, April 18, 2012. Don’t forget to vote!