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SGA approves new club and addresses campus issues

Izzy ManzoPhoto Editor

The Student Government Association unanimously voted to approve a rock climbing club and discussed ongoing issues such as food services and community hour during their general body meeting on Feb. 28.

The new club, which would potentially be called the “South Connecticut Climbers”, aims to “provide students of Southern with a supportive, welcoming, friendly, and safe community of climbers, and to give students the opportunity to be introduced in the activity or to improve their existing skill set,” according to English major Jade Serrano, a junior.

Psychology major Brian Petrucci, a junior, said the current community — which consists of twelve undergraduate students “[who are] a part of this group chat we have coordinating when we like to go climbing together” — met at City Climb Gym, which previously helped organize the Yale Climbing Club.

“A bunch of Southern students actually accidentally ran into each other while climbing,” he said.

After the unanimous approval of the club, Vice President of Student Experiences Katia Bagwell discussed the ongoing issues of community hour — an hour every Monday, Wednesday and Friday when classes are not supposed to be held — during her report.

After spending the past few weeks discussing space utilization, the Board of Student Experiences has decided to “switch gears” and focus on rescheduling classes that occur during community hour, according to Bagwell.

“For [our] next steps, we decided that we were going to go through the fall 2019 and spring 2020 courses that fall during community hour and meet with Bob Drobish about how we can fix that,” she said.

Bagwell said there have been some difficulties in trying to change some of the courses so they do not take place during community hour due to “special circumstances.” However, she mentioned an email allegedly sent out by the Provost to department chairs encouraging them to schedule classes outside of the community hour.

“So, we’re gonna try and meet with the Provost to see if we can get any backing on the community hour stance and to turn a strong reminder into something more mandatory,” she said.

Representative-at large Aidan Coleman’s committee report also discussed how committees such as Faculty Senate who hold their meetings during that time are being impacted.

“They also struggle with community hour,” he said, “because they can’t get people to their one o’clock meetings.”

During her committee report, representative at-large Krista Jones discussed issues with food services on campus. She encouraged students to voice their complaints about Connecticut Dining Hall to dining services so they can improve based on student’s concerns.

“When people, like, see something with, like, cross-contamination or like, raw food at Conn, they only complain about it, they don’t really do anything about it,” she said.

Additionally, Conn. Hall will hold focus groups during the month of March to dicuss the cross-contamination and gather student opinion in hopes to make improvements.

The committee report also discussed the potential closing of Davis Hall Outtakes, citing the lack of students in the building, as it is not an area where lots of students flow in and out of, aside from ones in major programs and the fact that “things that you can really buy from there are things you can get from a vending machine,” according to representative-at-large Kendall Manderville.

However, Student Conduct and Discipline Director Chris Piscitelli said that closing Davis Hall outtakes is “not something the university would sign off on,” and likely would not be something that would happen in the near future.

“The food service can’t just do that,” he said. “The university would’ve had to say, ‘We’re okay with this.’”


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