The members of SGA's executive branch are president Greg Carbó, vice president Katy Volikas, secretary Lizzie Ford, treasurer Kaia Thompson and president pro-tempore Zoe Taylor. Sara Barker, DN File
Semester review: SGA progresses on all platform points, assigns budgets
OPTiC, the executive slate of SGA, has made progress on all of its nine platform points and fully completed one: advancing technology on campus.
During the last student senate of the semester, president Greg Carbó updated the floor about this semester’s platform point progress. Treasurer Kaia Thompson detailed changes in expenses.
Out of the slate's nine platform points, one has been completed, two are nearly complete and six are in progress.
COMPLETE = The point's original main goal has been accomplished.
NEARLY COMPLETE = One or two meetings must happen before the point is completed.
IN PROGRESS = SGA has at least secured funding and has made the first steps in carrying out a plan to support the point.
Advancing technology on campus
At the beginning of the academic year, OPTiC had already implemented printers on every floor of Bracken Library and started to place charging stations around campus.
SGA ordered more charging stations on Black Friday under the point’s original assigned budget of $3,550 and plans on sending students a survey next semester asking where more should be installed.
In September, SGA announced it extended the Blue Loop bus route to run from early November to early May.
Initiating a five-year art plan
SGA has spoken to the director of the school of art, Arne Flaten; associate director for landscape and environmental management, Michael Planton; associate vice president for facilities planning and management, Jim Lowe; and President Geoffrey S. Mearns to start collaboration for the potentially grant-funded project.
“We’re waiting on administration to set up a meeting with all of these people,” Carbó said.
Mobilizing discussion about OpenStax core textbooks
After receiving feedback about OpenStax — a company that provides open-source textbooks to some colleges and universities — from faculty council at its Nov. 9 meeting, Carbó decided more emphasis should be placed on open educational resources as a whole.
To further this point, Carbó said SGA has started working with the Open Textbook Alliance, and he has a template already made to write legislation showing SGA’s support of open educational resources.
This initiative was allotted $150 in the original budget.
Fostering student-teacher relationships
Though a $3,000 budget has been laid out for this point in SGA’s budget, no decision has been made on how to best use those funds.
Next semester, Carbó said students will receive a survey asking what they think the point’s implementation should entail, and SGA will host an event or start a program to support student opinion.
Organizing UPD cadet initiative
In his executive update, Carbó said this point has changed since the beginning of the semester.
Originally, SGA, along with the student safety committee and the secretary of student safety, Drake Spangler, aimed to host a summit for chiefs of university police departments from around the state.
Now, the point’s new focus is two-pronged. First, SGA wants to support LiveSafe, a campus safety app, and its integration into Ball State’s campus.
Off-campus caucus chair Kaleb Chowning said during the Nov. 15 student senate that among other safety features, the app’s most popular function is a service to ask friends to watch each other walk across campus via GPS.
SGA also wants to host a summit next semester for SGAs across Indiana to share ideas on how to better support student safety. The budget allotted to this point remains at $350.
Establishing a central location for diversity resources
SGA will meet with the Beneficence Dialogue’s communication subcommittee Thursday to discuss how students responded to the dialogue and how those responses should be interpreted in the context of campus.
Providing incentives on multicultural organization collaboration
Right now, no events have been planned to support this point, but Carbó said assigning the point’s budget was the first step in supporting it.
Currently this platform point has $5,000 allocated from SGA's budget.
Promoting mental health initiatives on campus
Backing for this point consists mainly of events hosted by SGA, using the point's remaining budget of $2,343.32.
So far, a panel held Nov. 9 addressing sexual assault is the only event behind this point. However, SGA has bystander intervention training scheduled for Jan. 23.
Carbó said SGA will meet next week with the Counseling Center to plan a mindfulness event.
Assisting/expanding current academic programs and resources on campus
Part of this point includes hosting events which support students so they may succeed academically, such as community study tables and events like the Hit the Books Bash. The bash had funding approved during Wednesday's meeting and the funds will come from the $2,600 discretionary fund.
SGA will also continue to run its student task force, iLearn, to gauge student responses about Canvas as the university looks toward replacing Blackboard.