Senate Weekly Beat: Introductions, Elections, and New Dean Sharon Basso

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ASCMC Vice President Felipe Afanador ‘18 started the meeting by introducing the finalized board members for the five standing Senate committees: Campus Improvements, Environmental Concerns, Technology, Innovation, and Student Affairs, Consortium Affairs, and Administrative Affairs and Appropriations. President Pro Tempore Thomas Schalke ’18 then took over to explain the voting procedure to elect two Senators each onto the Budget and Elections Committees. Winning the majority vote, Dina Rosin ’20 and Anthony Burre ’19 were elected to serve on the Budget committee while Andrew Freidlander ’19 and Alec Lopata ’19 were elected to serve on the Elections Committee. Soon after, Schalke informed the first years about the upcoming freshman class president elections, including logistical details and campaign requirements.

Sharon Basso, Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, talked to the Senate about her new role at CMC and the issues she intends to address in the coming months and addressed student expectations. Basso informed the Senators about her current goal of wanting to be involved with the student body and fostering a supportive environment for open discussion. She went on to talk about her intention to build a peer advising and tutoring network that includes the CMC faculty and staff.

Following her talk, ASCMC Vice President Felipe Afanador ’18 opened the floor to questions and concerns directed at Basso. Basso addressed mental health concerns by pointing out that in a high achieving, high-stress environment such as that at CMC, depression, and sleep deprivation are serious issues that have not been adequately addressed, but need to be attended to. Using a core management network, Basso intends to build a bridge to cover any issues that Monsour Counseling Services aren't able to address with hopes to better facilitate therapy and dialogue. She directed the Senate to Kristin Weyman, Dean of First Year and Sophomore Students, regarding any questions about underclassmen initiatives. She concluded her talk by addressing the questions surrounding the resignation of Eric Vos, the former Dean of Residential Life, the appointment of Sean Rollolazo as Assistant Director of Residential Life, and the ongoing hunt to fully staff the Dean of Students office.

During the last minutes of Senate, a handful of freshman asked the Senate questions about the protests that took place at CMC last year. Presidential Advisor Tyler Finn ’17, Senior Class President Cole Mora ’17, and ASCMC President Nicky Blumm ’17, answered questions and directed the freshman to the upperclassmen to hear the accounts of the protests firsthand.

Afanador concluded the meeting by reminding the Senate about the 5C Turf Dinner at Scripps College on 9/13.