Sunday night, the members of the Undergraduate Assembly ratified a new committee to ensure quality in election debates.
During the open discussion UA College representative and freshman Varun Menon brought up the possibility of an International Cultural Fair that would be tied to the work he does with international financial aid. While UA College representative and freshman Yessenia Moreno pitched a question for a student who has not received his grades from his professor.
UA College representative and junior Jenny Xia brought to the floor the question of expanding PennCycle services, citing the high success rate. “On a day when the weather’s nice, we usually have every bike checked out at some point in the day,” Xia said.
UA Vice President and College junior Abe Sutton reported on the progress of the political advocacy guidelines debated last week. “Just like the budgetary committee adopts certain guidelines that they use to formulate the budget, the exec board thought it would be appropriate to adopt guidelines for itself about political advocacy,” he said.
The guidelines are as follows: the issue being addressed should affect students in their capacity on Penn’s campus, and the UA should only take a stance if it has a reasonable chance of impacting the actual policy under scrutiny. Additionally, student groups with positions on the issue should be invited to help shape the resolution, and the resolution should not support or oppose any particular bill, though it may reference a bill.
UA Secretary and College sophomore Joyce Kim and Menon also updated the body on their Native American studies minor project. “Dr. Margaret Bruschac, the new director of the Center for American Indian Studies, definitely wants to look into creating a minor,” Kim said. “There will be a new task force created to look into it, and Varun and I will actually be on that task force.”
The major business for the night was the ratification of the Commission for Undergraduate Assembly Debates members.
UA President and College junior Dan Bernick said, “This body made a very forward-thinking resolution last semester to appoint a council in charge of our debates.”
The CUAD’s members were picked from a list of applicants by the selective choice of Commission Chair and NEC Vice President for Education and College junior Catherine Wang.
“This is a wonderful slate of commissioners and I urge you to ratify this,” Bernick said. The ratification breezed through the UA, passing nearly unanimously with one abstention.