The Association of Students of the University of Nebraska discussed four new pieces of legislation related to ASUN bylaws, resident assistants in residence halls and outreach events after they voted on three pieces of old legislation during the weekly senate meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 7.
External vice president Jeffrey Owusu-Ansah said the Nebraska Union has invited ten ASUN senators to an event on Thursday, Nov. 29, to talk about renovations to the facility.
Owusu-Ansah has been working on the project since the beginning of the semester and said he believed senators who participate in the conversation will shape the lives of future University of Nebraska-Lincoln students.
“Students do realize how difficult it is to make friends at this university, but they don’t realize that the union is supposed to make that process easier,” he said.
Owusu-Ansah also said he will continue to work on the priority registration project that will allow non-traditional students, students with children and commuter students who live a certain distance away from campus to register for classes before other students.
President Hunter Traynor said he created a manual about student election groups so students know how to run for the ASUN executive team in the spring. Traynor said he will email the guide to the leaders of recognized student organizations.
Academic Committee chair Ibraheem Hamzat said he met with interim vice chancellor of student affairs Laurie Bellows and representatives of RSOs focused on mental health to discuss adding a clause in all syllabi about mental health resources on campus.
Committee for Diversity and Inclusion co-chair Awa Youm said the committee is working on a project to rename the Georgian Suite and Colonial Room in the Nebraska Union. She said they want to rename the rooms so their name ties back to Nebraska.
The senate voted Senate Bills 8, 9 and 10 concerning ASUN’s bylaws, which were introduced during the last senate meeting.
Senate Bills 8 and 9 both unanimously passed. Senate Bill 8 removed the Environmental Sustainability Committee Appointments Board, so the committee will no longer have a separate appointments board. Senate Bill 9 changed the responsibilities of the ASUN internal and external vice presidents.
ASUN passed Senate Bill 10 with an amendment to invite members of different organizations to be part of the Homecoming Steering Committee. Graduate Student Association president Julia Reilly proposed this amendment so ASUN would not be in violation of its bylaws if members of different organizations did not join the committee.
ASUN also discussed Senate Bills 11 and 12, which are also about the organization’s bylaws. The senate body will vote on the pieces of legislation during their meeting Nov. 14.
Senate Bill 11 moves to revise the Freshman Campus Leadership Associates’ bylaws. If passed, members will not have to attend office hours in the ASUN office, and FCLA members will not be split into committees. Student Services Committee chair Randy Thomas said the change regarding committees has been proposed because the organization no longer follows an official committee structure.
The bill also moves to remove a provision regarding the diversity of FCLA members, which commands that the committee’s membership include students of “all genders” with an equal number of students to serve, “providing an equitable representation of persons across the gender spectrum.”
Senators expressed concerns about the removal of this clause because they want to ensure FCLA includes diverse members.
Senate Bill 12 moves to remove the provision that assigns the Committee for Diversity and Inclusion members as liaisons for specific groups of students. Despite this change, the bill states the committee will continue to work with several student groups on campus.
The Committee for Diversity and Inclusion will also no longer be responsible for maintaining a guiding statement on diversity for ASUN to utilize while making legislation or maintaining a long-term diversity plan for the university if the bill passes.
According to Senate Bill 12, Committee for Diversity and Inclusion co-chairs Awa Youm and Tamayo Zhou said their committee needs a more flexible structure.
The Campus Life and Safety Committee submitted Senate Resolution 3, which formally declares that ASUN believes RAs should become CPR-certified during training.
The Campus Life and Safety Committee chair Omar Elkhader said RAs used to not be allowed to perform CPR on residents. He said committee member Amanda Melcher worked with housing administration to confirm the university would not be liable for any injury to the resident in need of CPR under the Good Samaritan law.
Elkhader said RAs and the university would not be punished if the RA chose to not perform CPR on the resident because of the Good Samaritan law.
Senators also discussed whether it was necessary for RAs to be CPR-certified, and most senators said they believed it was important.
Senate Resolution 3 passed unanimously.
The Government Liaison Committee submitted Government Bill 18 to allocate up to $50 to the committee so the members can inform students about Veterans Day and help students make poppy wreaths at a booth. Senators unanimously passed the bill.
The next senate meeting will take place in the Nebraska Union on Wednesday, Nov. 14 at 6:30 p.m.