Student Senate passes game-day parking bill, approves new centennial logo
Published: Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 17:11
On Tuesday, Student Senate voted on and passed a bill regarding game-day parking in the Law garage. However, it still debated the major and minor points of the bill.
There was a home football game on Thursday Oct. 18th that caused a major on-campus parking issue. Namely, law students, who are mandated in their tuition to pay for parking in their garage, weren’t able to park in the Law Garage due to the excess vehicle population.
This resulted in many law students being late, and even some of their classes being canceled.
Under the auspices that at a university education and academics take primacy over extracurricular events (such as football and tailgating), Sen.Christopher Cornell authored a resolution to urge the SMU Athletic Department to better manage the parking situation. The resolution stated that law students could use the law garage, regardless of what other events are taking place on campus at the time.
Voices of opposition stated that the university wants to bring in people — students and the Dallas community — on game days and that the Big East move will bring much more exposure (including television cameras) to the university and the football team.
Indeed, as for most American universities, the football team is a major source of revenue and branding for SMU.
Moreover, Sen. Emily McIntosh, who abstained from the final vote, expressed concern that the bill pertains narrowly to law students.
At that point, it was countered that the power of the bill is its specificity, that it doesn’t hurt anyone to pass it and that it indeed helps a group of people to pass it.
Furthermore, it was said it would be more efficacious in changing the parking dilemma if every specific group affected (i.e. law students, undergraduates, commuters and others) filed their own bill on this issue, which would attack the problem from many different perspectives.
Finally, the Senate voted, and the bill passed.
Another bill, authored by the members of the Senate Diversity Committee — Chair Kim Elmazi; Senators Kathrina Macalanda, Tarry Machaka, Larry Crudup, and Alexa Dow — was introduced to the chamber, and will be voted on at a later date.
It notes that currently there is no “isolated mandatory diversity training for incoming students,” which means SMU doesn’t require its new students to learn about diversity issues in an exclusive fashion.
Diversity is given a discursive overview at AARO and Mustang Corral, but these lesson incarnations are insufficient because it isn’t the main focus. By comparison, sexual assault is discussed, also discursively, within those programs, but also is given an exclusive and mandated conduit for education called Let’s Talk About It.
This resolution calls for the implementation of a mandatory, “isolated” program in which diversity is discussed at length, featuring faculty participation and student testimonials.
In other news, Senate will be hosting a town hall meeting on Monday, Nov. 11 at 5 p.m. in Hughes-Trigg. Executive Director of Student Development Jennifer Jones, Athletic Director Rick Hart, SMU Police Chief Rick Shafer and OIT Director Brad Boeke will make up the panel and attempt to discuss student concerns about their specific departments.
Campus security, wireless network speeds and athletics are usually hot button issues with the student body.
The chamber also approved a new Senate centennial logo – in keeping with SMU’s centenary theme. The logo features a likeness of Dallas Hall within a bubble, flanked by the words “Student Senate” and “SMU.”
The color scheme boldly utilizes SMU’s brand of red and blue, cleverly offset with white spacing, thereby creating the illusion of depth. The winning designer of this logo will receive $250.