Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.
Possible Stipend for StuCo?
Appointments Chair Will Lawrence ’13 introduced the question of paying StuCo members, either by stipend or hourly salary. If all members of Council agreed, the proposal would pass, otherwise it would go to a student referendum. The current StuCo members would not benefit from the proposal.
Co-President Gabby Capone ’14 said that she doesn’t believe that all the positions should be paid the same amount, but that might mean that students would run only for the highest-paid positions. Student Group Advisor Lanie Schlessinger ’15 said that hourly pay would be hard to determine. Lawrence suggested clocking the same amount of hours each week.
Concerns were raised about the student body’s potential reaction. Lawrence said he emailed former StuCo Vice President Deivid Rojas ’11 who previously spearheaded a stipend initiative for StuCo members. Rojas said the referendum was beat down by only 30 votes two years ago.
Closed Portion of Weekly StuCo Meeting
StuCo members decided that the last portion of the weekly StuCo meeting will be closed; private to StuCo members and the individuals or groups who come to present a private or sensitive issue. This decision came after several weeks of students coming to the open Sunday meetings and wanting to be heard “off the record.”
“[At] an open meeting, that doesn’t make sense on principle,” said Co-Managing Editor of The Daily Gazette Max Nesterak ’13. He was also concerned about students choosing which parts of their conversations would or wouldn’t be reported, “making the conversation seem weighted” either for or against them, depending on the issue.
Capone brought up the issue of misrepresentation in The Gazette’s StuCo reports, either through comments presented with a lack of context or factual errors and misquotes. There is also the fear, she noted, of anonymous attacks on The Gazette website.
Out of respect for these concerns, The Gazette will not attend or report on the closed portion of StuCo meetings.
Capone will be meeting with Dean of Students Liz Braun to discuss Genderfuck, the Board of Managers meeting and other current issues. Lawrence stressed that he would like Braun to know how happy students are that Genderfuck is a go. He said that students were “very concerned” about its possible cancellation, and prepared to push back against the administration on issues of social life on campus.
At the recent Educational Policy Study Break, StuCo collected survey information that they will share with the Educational Policy Committee. A lot of students were concerned about the reduction in faculty course load, and would like there to be a forum to discuss it. StuCo is considering sending out a school-wide survey on these issues.
StuCo is planning a meeting to discuss sexual assault on campus. The meeting is currently scheduled for March 15 at 7 p.m. in Kohlberg Coffee Bar.
On Thursday the 16th of February StuCo is holding an information session. They are asking students to come with topics they would like discussed with the Board of Managers and also to put forward suggestions for StuCo.
Outreach Coordinator Ian Anderson ’13 has finished working on the StuCo website, which should be launching soon.