UA passes Preferred Name Initiative II unanimously

The Undergraduate Assembly also confirmed a new Speaker

· January 14, 2013, 1:16 am

In its inaugural meeting for the semester on Sunday night, the Undergraduate Assembly got back to work.

The business of the meeting centered on the Preferred Name Resolution II, which was passed unanimously. The resolution came to the UA at its last meeting in the fall of 2012, and aims to provide a more accessible route for students of the LGBT and international communities to change their names on official documents.

Upon its introduction last semester, it met contention from members concerned about the finances of the resolution. An amendment was introduced to block passage until a way could be found for students to change their name without worrying about a fee.

“It turns out the fee was irrelevant, since the change is free,” Vice President and College and Wharton junior Abe Sutton, who sponsored the bill, said. The clarification emerged after Sutton and Lambda Alliance chair and College sophomore Dawn Androphy did more research.

At the meeting, Androphy spoke to support its passage. “This is really something we need to make more accessible to students,” she said.

The changes to the old resolution include an expansion of the provisions to allow students to change their name for religious reasons, and clarification of the financial problem. With the problems from last time cleared up, the resolution was then passed unanimously.

The UA opened with members presenting a range of issues for discussion in the general body.

Members brought forward discussion about the projects they were embarking on for the semester. UA Representative and College freshman Justin Taleisnik brought up security guidelines in the Quad, and UA Technology Director and College junior Nikolai Zapertov discussed whether the University could take an official stance on gun control.

In addition, Speaker and College junior Will Smith introduced the two new members of the UA, College juniors Gen LeMee and Jenny Xia, who were selected by the Nominations and Elections Committee. LeMee and Xia are replacing the spots vacated by former UA College representative and College junior Ernest Owens, now video producer for the Daily Pennsylvanian, and former UA Speaker and College senior Jon Monfred.

The UA’s final business was the confirmation of a new speaker pro tempore. The UA executive board appointed College sophomore Joshua Chilcote to the position. Asked what his qualifications were, Chilcote pulled out a copy of Robert’s Rules of Order, the ubiquitous parliamentary style discussion handbook, and said, “I like reading this.” His confirmation, too, passed unanimously.

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