Students convene for first Committee on Student Life Town Hall meeting: Discussion includes information on Moorebid, Oktoberfest and student concerns

Posted by Julia Leef

This week's Oktoberfest and the upcoming Moorebid Ball were just two of the topics discussed at the first Committee on Student Life (CSL) Town Hall meeting, held at 10 p.m. on Wednesday in the Spa. Approximately 25 students attended and posed questions to members of the Student Government Association ad-hoc committee.

Led by Hannah DeGraaf '15, vice president for Student Life, the committee welcomed students with the promise of being available to listen to their concerns.

"This town hall meeting is part of an effort for the SGA to be more transparent to the student body," DeGraaf said.

The first announcement concerned Moorebid Ball, which has been approved for this year despite its past troubled years. DeGraaf announced that the Halloween dance will take place on Oct. 26 in the Spa and on Porter Plaza outside of Case Center. There will be a limited number of tickets as well as a re-entry policy. To give students unable to attend an alternate activity, there also will be a simultaneous screening of the Rocky Horror Picture Show at Falstaff's.

President of the senior class, Xavier Hatten '14, promoted the events of Oktoberfest, an annual event sponsored by the Senior Class Council that will include a Professional Burlesque and Striptease at 9 p.m. on Thursday and a Spectacular Freak Show Dance at 10 p.m. on Saturday, both in the Spa, in accordance with this year's theme, "Classic Freak Show."

There will also be a performance, hosted by the Student Entertainment Company, from Danny Brown and Action Bronson at the Big Show at 8 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 4, in the Big Gym of the Williamson Sports Center, to which $5 tickets are being sold.

SGA President Sam Harris '15, spoke about his involvement on the Institutional Policy and Planning Committee, which he serves on alongside co-Chair Rochelle Calhoun, dean of Student Affairs, and other members of the President's Cabinet.

Among the topics the IPPC is discussing are the Student Bill of Rights, improving the College's hazing policy, increasing the number of sessions per student available at the Counseling Center, increasing the library hours, obtaining more transportation for students in the form of Zipcars and rented cars, and fixing the poor cell phone reception in the North Woods apartments, for which Hatten will distribute a petition amongst the student body.

Harris also mentioned that he is currently involved in the debate regarding the College's smoking policy, but that he was unable to disclose any information at this time.

DeGraaf also mentioned changing the College's Study Day policy to allow for events, and announced that the chairperson position of the Late Night Committee is now an elected position, and that the committee would be required to host an event every other weekend.

The meeting then opened up to address concerns from the study body, many of which involved issues with various residences on campus. These included improving the communication between students and their Unit Advisors in North Woods, simplifying the work order process with facilities, improving the garbage situation in North Woods, which currently attracts animals with its mounds of overflowing trash, as well as loud construction outside of Wiecking Hall at 7:30 a.m. DeGraaf promised to bring these issues up in her next meeting with Don Hastings, director of Residential Life.

Several students also brought up the closing of the North Woods entrance near Wait Hall, but Hatten responded that the North Woods village was meant to be a pedestrian area, and that the gate was never meant for cars.

Questions about the union conflict were also raised, to which DeGraaf responded that, according to what she had been told by workers during Senate meetings, students who wish to help should ask workers questions and say "I stand with the workers" to those who ask.

A final concern about creating designated smoking areas was brought up, to which Harris responded that while he could not say anything on the subject, he would keep the matter in mind.

The CSL Town Hall meetings will take place on a monthly basis, and until further notice will be at the same time and place.

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