Calling All Senators!

This Monday, September 12th, the Associated Students of Claremont McKenna College (ASCMC) Senate will meet for the first time this semester in the Bauer Forum at 10 PM, following a brief introductory meeting designed to bring new prospective senators up to speed on the way the organization operates. Aditya Pai (CMC '13), Vice President of ASCMC, will continue as the President of the ASCMC Senate after succeeding Chris Jones late last year.

The Senate operates as both a funding resource for clubs and student trips and as a general forum through which CMC students can discuss any issues they’d like to bring to the attention of both ASCMC and the administration. As Pai puts it, “ASCMC Senate is the place where CMC students can directly vote on campus issues and voice their opinions on CMC issues.”

He added, “Senate is the place where students can represent themselves,” and that has certainly been true in the recent past. For example, just a few years ago, when the CMC administration was trying to determine where they’d like to put the most recent CMC computer lab (Ryal Lab), they went to the Senate to get students’ input on where they would most like to see it installed.

Senate has also long acted as a resource to help students and clubs undertake ambitious, and sometimes costly, extracurricular projects. For example, last Spring, Senate funds went to help support CMC students Chris Temple ('12) and Zach Ingrasci ('12) in their noteworthy involvement in the Living on One Dollar for a Day Project.

This year, the Senate leadership, under Aditya Pai’s direction, hopes to represent CMC students even more effectively. He points out that “in the past, senate has been mainly a pot of money … that’s an important function, but the change we’d like to make this year is to make the Senate a broader forum for campus issues.”

In order to achieve this goal, the Senate will be revamping its committee system, in hopes that the five committees will be able to take a larger role in handling financial requests before the weekly meetings. Hopefully, this will produce more accountability in the financial request process and allow for more time to be spent on what Pai calls “Open Senate,” during which any student can discuss any grievances or problems they have with the school or fellow students in front of the Senate chamber.

To conclude, Pai added that Senate is a great place for students who want to make Claremont McKenna College an even more fantastic institution than it already is. He explains, “We all know that CMC is great. It’s a great school and there’s a lot that we do well, but being a student leader is about figuring out what we can do better.”

Those interested can follow three main paths to becoming involved with Senate:

1. Attend the first Senate meeting and the three following meetings. You will be named a Senator at the first, but are expected to attend three consecutive meetings regardless. 2. Attend three consecutive meetings after the first; you will be named a Senator at the third meeting. 3. Become elected as a Senator at your dorm’s first dorm meeting (this should have already happened.)

New and returning Senators and anyone interested about learning more about ASCMC Senate should come to Bauer Forum at 9:30 PM this upcoming Monday night, September 12 .