Anya Tudisco, Finance Chair (Part 1)

Anya

Last week, Senior Anya Tudisco, Chair of ASWC’s Finance Committee, sat down with ASWC Unpacked to discuss her position and time in ASWC. The Seattle native described her participation in ASWC as the greatest influence on her experience at Whitman.  She is always willing to discuss students’ ideas at aswc_finance@whitman.edu

ASWC Unpacked: Why did you initially join ASWC?

Tudisco: That’s actually an interesting question — it was kind of […] a whim. Something that drew me to Whitman in the first place was that everyone seemed involved and engaged in what was happening on campus; I wanted to be a part of that energy. So, I was looking for ways to do that when I got here, and I knew that I was going to be involved in music and classes, but beyond that I wasn’t really sure. […] I went to a presentation at Cordiner for first-years and heard some of the upperclassmen speak about [ASWC,] and saw that student government here isn’t at all what it was in high school. It sounded like they were talking about issues that actually mattered to students and life on a college campus, and I felt like it would be a good use of my time. So I put together a silly campaign, and [the election] worked out. I also met a couple of upperclassmen […] to talk about ASWC. I met with [Tatiana Kaehler], who was here last year.  That was how we first became friends: I asked her on a weird coffee date and we talked about ASWC and Finance. And I was like, “Fun! She seems great, this seems great…” And I haven’t regretted.

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Senate the Fourth

Sunday’s Senate began promptly at 7:00 PM with a flurry of discussion, culminating in debate over the role of the Resolution. Vice President Arthur Shemitz and President Jack Percival recalled their presentation to the Trustees during which they highlighted campus safety, preferred gender pronouns, and the Global Studies Initiative. President Percival solicited feedback on ASWC’s budget priorities for a meeting with the budget advisory committee. He planned to request additional funds for the Bike Share Program, Power and Privilege Symposium, and FGWC (First Generation and Working Class) fly-in pre orientation. After reviewing club budgets, Arthur Shemitz, AnnaMarie McCorvie and Jon Miranda worked towards drafting a new by-law concerning Campus Media Organizations’ purchases of personal items such as pens and stickers. Mitch Cutter updated the Senate on his investigations into college transparency, possible carbon taxes and transforming Reid into a community space with a “restaurant-that-serves-alcohol feel.”

ASWC ratified the Whitman Socialist Front after what Arthur Shemitz praised as “one of the most impressive presentations I’ve ever seen.” Club founder Brynn Louise explained that the Whitman Socialist Front “intends to educate the community” about socialism and “bring[…] about an… egalitarian society.” The club hopes to collaborate with other ideologically similar groups on campus, such as FACE and the Black Student Union.

Yu Jian Wang and NoahLani Nitwinsella, members of Whitman’s Moot Court team, received funding to attend a Moot Court competition in Anaheim, California. Wang emphasized how Moot Court allows students to practice reading case files “as long as a Biology textbook,” an especially valuable opportunity for students interested in law.

Sophomore Dan Pailthorp joined the Student Life Committee upon ASWC’s unanimous confirmation. The committee, according to Nominations Chair AnnaMarie McCorvie, “makes non-academic, non-disciplinary changes, and works, for example, on gender diversity.” Pailthorp intends to increase the diversity of voices addressing the Global Studies Initiative and other ongoing issues; he believes that “through these types of conversations, Whitman can be a campus that communicates more.”

Following recent horrific events in Paris, first-year Senator Caroline Bauwens wrote a Resolution extending support to the people of France. However, the Senate expressed concern over the implications of its passage, and chose to remand it (send it back) to the Student Affairs Committee. Finance Chair Anya Tudisco questioned whether “this is the sort of issue Whitman should be taking a stance on” through with a Resolution. First-year Senator Ben Cosgrove stated his discomfort with “supporting one country over another.” Vice President Arthur Shemitz encouraged the Senate to show its sympathy and support for the French by attending last Monday’s candlelight vigil.

Bike Share Intern — Hiring through November 29th

Bike

Cycling enthusiast? Passionate about sustainability? ASWC Sustainability Director Dani Hupper and Sustainability Coordinator Tristan Sewell are sponsoring an internship for Whitman’s soon-to-be revitalized Bike Share program. Until November 29th, interested students can apply for the chance to maintain bicycles, re-write a participant contract, establish user feedback, and more for a salary of $10/hour. Interns will be expected to work roughly four hours per week beginning next Spring. Please send questions, resumes, and cover letters to: aswc_nominations@whitman.edu

In Whitman we Trust

Last Thursday, ASWC President Jack Percival and Vice President Arthur Shemitz met with the Board of Trustees during their on-campus meeting. The students’ presentation, a yearly tradition for ASWC leaders, centered around the ideas and initiatives of the Whitman student body. The ASWC Unpacked blog, as per its titular duty, interviewed Percival and Shemitz to unpack their recent meeting.

AU: What is the Board of Trustees, and what is the purpose of their on-campus meeting?

Percival: The Board of Trustees is a group of people who are prominent in their field and who have a strong stake and interest in Whitman College and the liberal arts education that Whitman provides. These are people who are alumni, who are parents, [or] are just invested in the college without any affiliation beyond that interest. The Board has two major responsibilities. The first is that they hire and evaluate the President, which is a big deal because that person is responsible for managing the college […] Two, they have sole financial control over the college. They control the budget; they ensure that the endowment will exist in perpetuity to support students in the college […] The purpose of their on-campus meeting is for them to get updates from various staff about the day-to-day decisions that they’re not involved in… They make big decisions regarding finances [and] the direction of the college, and it’s important for them to all be in the room for those causes.

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Senate, Round Three

Though shorter than usual, Sunday’s Senate had no shortage of productive decisions. During updates, Finance Chair Anya Tudisco raised concerns about the budget deficit due to under enrollment at Whitman this year. Nominations Chair AnnaMarie McCorvie encouraged upperclassmen to apply for the currently incomplete Registrar’s committee. Oversight Chair Jon Miranda and Clubs Director Josie Furbershaw sought to clarify the budget use and identity of clubs, respectively. Concluding the meeting’s opening comments, Ombudsman Mitch Cutter and Senator Skye Vander Laan raised the possibility of opening a campus bar.

McCorvie introduced Jackie Greisen, who was confirmed as the newest member of the Bon Appétit Advisory Committee in a 17-0-2 vote. Greisen’s experience in the food service industry and focus on sustainability secured her the position; she aims to “make sure there’s less food waste” and expand dining hall hours. The Senate was especially impressed by Greisen’s selection of the avocado as her spirit vegetable.

President Arthur Shemitz discussed the Global Studies Initiative, commenting that it had “consumed [him and] President Jack Percival over the course of the past two weeks.” Percival outlined the Initiative, describing its enrichment of professors’ teaching and research. He explained that Dean of Faculty Pat Spencer temporarily suspended course releases (which exempt participating professors from teaching one class), leading to tension The Senate passed Resolution SRF 15.2, which advocates for the Initiative and how it broadens Whitman’s focus and supports students of color.

Sustainability director Dani Hupper successfully acquired funding to compensate an intern for Whitman’s bike share program. Hupper emphasized the program’s need for revitalization and promised that she is “not just going to hire any noob.” The intern will be tasked with the organization, advertisement and upkeep of the program.

ASWC awarded the Drama Club $500 in contingency funds to support its expanding membership and student-run plays. Representative Dan Lovato expressed excitement for the club’s attendance of the Ashland Shakespeare Festival, where students will “experience what the world of theater is like.”

To conclude, ASWC President Jack Percival relayed his intentions to discuss preferred gender pronoun use, campus safety and the Global Studies Initiative with the Board of Trustees.