by Tim Sullivan ’17
On Tuesday, Rafael Zapata, Providence College’s chief diversity officer, spoke to the Congress about Moore Hall’s design for the new Center for Inclusive Excellence. Zapata came to the meeting to hear students’ suggestions about programming and other intentions for the space. He had envisioned a center that included everything from learning and lounging to arts and culture.
The space’s design plan should be finalized by March 17, with the Center being fully operational by fall 2017. Students suggested more performing and visual arts capabilities, as well as a free posting space being placed in the building as well. The Center for Inclusive Excellence will cost roughly $1 million over the next two years and will be primarily funded through fundraising.
The finance committee will be meeting after spring break to discuss a recent finance reform initiative concerning PC Prints, phone charging fees, and a readership program charge.
Both the Class of 2018 and the Class of 2019 are well underway in their core programs concerning graduation and class rings.
On Monday, March 27, Congress will be holding a coffeehouse to discuss upcoming elections and how to get involved with the 68th Student Congress.
Old & New Business
Mike Bartels ’18 continued to push his piece through the legislative process this past meeting. The legislation concerned rewording the student handbook to eliminate any vagueness regarding the possession of alcohol paraphernalia.
There was some pushback from Congress members, saying that the legislation will not necessarily accomplish anything specific and seems to be more work for hall directors and the Office of Community Standards. There were also concerns that the Faculty Senate will not appreciate or deem the legislation useful, thus preventing its implementation.
Although some members disagreed with Bartels, others found the potential rewording useful for students. Bartels stated that the language can be revised as time passes and as the Office of Community Standards sees fit.
The legislation passed with 21 votes in the affirmative, 18 votes in the negative, and four members abstaining due to absence.
New business was introduced this week, with the Sustainable Development Club presenting itself to the Congress. The club aims to link sustainable environmental practices with economics and business methods learned at the College. The club was well received by the student body and will be voted on at the next general meeting.