Siena College's Student Newspaper

Academic & Social News

Student Senate Update

Hi everyone! Since our last issue, Student Senate has had two meetings, one on February 18 and one on February 25. During the February 18 meeting, the Student Senate heard reports from the Career Education and Professional Development office about the recent Career and Graduate School Fair. We also discussed an incident on campus and addressed the use of the Siena Logo and concerns from the student body that administration was not doing anything to address the issue, the Administration reassured us that action was being taken but cannot be disclosed because of Privacy laws. In response to the events that occurred, students have taken action and coordinated an event called Speaking Our Values during which there will be open talks about inclusivity, bias and safety on our campus. 

We are also working to begin a new initiative to promote the use of reusable bags on campus. As it sits right now, we will be ordering canvas bags that will be available for purchase for $1 or $2. We are hoping to continue working to promote sustainability on campus in a variety of ways but we see this as a good place to start, especially with the plastic bag tax that will go into effect March 1, 2020. 

Our annual Alex’s Lemonade Stand event during Sienafest weekend is also in the works, keep an eye out for more information about that as we move forward. As the date approaches we will be seeking out student volunteers to help run lemonade stands across the entire campus. These opportunities will be posted in the digest when they come up, so keep an eye out!

The class councils are as active as ever and are working to plan a variety of events for their classes. If you are interested in learning more, feel free to contact any member of your class council for more information. 

The week of February 17th was also Frozen Week. For our participation, we did a “Candy for Your Complaints” event on Wednesday during Free Period. It was great to hear from our fellow students about the issues that you all see as important on campus. In that same spirit, we are planning at Town Hall for Free Period on Monday March 16, 2020. If you have concerns, please bring them to this event or email them to studentsenate@siena.edu.

During our 2/25 meeting, our discussion began with an open forum with information from Rachel Jones of AVI and Mark Frost of Facilities. We discussed heating issues and snow removal procedures as well as getting more student input on the food through tabling in Lonnstrom dining hall. We also heard from Rachel Wilson from the Crime Victim and Sexual Violence Center in Albany about getting more students involved in their annual Take Back the Night event.

The Albany Times Union has posted nominees for its annual Best of the Capital Region Awards, and Siena is up for Best College. A link will be shared in the daily digest this week for any student to click on and vote. Students can vote every day until the polls close at 11:59PM on Thursday, March 5, and when you vote, you’re entered to win $500.  Siena is up against The College of St. Rose, HVCC, RPI and UAlbany. UAlbany won last year and the year before so please encourage your friends and family to vote Siena, that way we can take home the award this year!

The plans for the seating space in Snyder Hall are just about finalized. We are planning on lining the left wall of the space with student artwork and hanging the recently returned Siena sign over the fireplace with a plaque describing its history. Hopefully in coming weeks the Senate will be able to share with all students the finalized sketches before development begins this summer. 

For all club leaders, it is important to note that the club manual is being reviewed and edited. The Student Senate Constitution is also being reviewed and is likely to be amended this semester.

The Student Activities and Leadership Development Office is also looking for a new director. Dean Felio reported that the first round of phone interviews for the position went well and he is feeling optimistic about finding a new person for that important campus roll. 

If you’re interested in getting involved with Student Senate we have two open positions: Senator-at-Large and Residential Associate. The application is live on saintsconnect, contact studentsenate@siena.edu if you have any questions.That’s all for this update, come see us during our meetings on Tuesdays at 4:15 or email studentsenate@siena.edu with any questions!