The Student Senate met Monday, March 7, 21 and 28. Here is what you need to know.
By Sarah Bakeman and Molly Wilson
Third student ministries director and new BSG stipends
Student Senators Laura Charlotte Underwood, Sam Cottington and Elizabeth Paul introduced Resolution 63-7 Mar. 21. The resolution states that Student Ministries has decided that a third director position is necessary, as the workload for just two directors has become too much. In addition to this, the resolution states that per the Handbook for BSG it is time to review BSG members’ stipends. The resolution then proposes potential stipend changes.
|Position||Current Stipend||Proposed Stipend|
|Executive Director of Student Ministries||$2300||$2500|
|Executive Director of Student Activities||$2900||$3000|
|Executive Director of Clubs and Organizations||$2300||$2500|
|Executive Director of United Cultures of Bethel||$2300||$2900|
|Executive Chair of Student Senate||$2300||$2600|
|Executive Director of Communications and Marketing||$2500||$2700|
|Director of Student Ministries||$1100||$1200|
|Director of Student Activities||$1700||$1700|
|United Cultures of Bethel Subgroup Director||$1100||$1500|
|President Pro Tempore of Student Senate||$1400||$1500|
|Director of Communications and Marketing||$1400||$1500|
|Senators||$100+$50 per semester of experience||$100+$50 per semester of experience|
The stipend committee that decided these numbers consists of the Student Body President, Student Body Vice President, Financial Officer, Executive Chair of the Student Senate, President Pro Tempore of the Student Senate and BSG Advisor. The BSG President and Financial officer also met with Executive Directors of BSG to get their input.
On Mar. 28 pros and cons were discussed. The pros were that the increase represents inflation and therefore does not alter the value of the stipend. The cons were that this resolution would be a $7000 increase in stipends, which is not necessarily in the budget.
“I feel like the increase that we’re looking towards right now is a lot more than Bethel could probably handle,” Senator Elizabeth Paul said.
BSG’s budget comes from the student fees every student pays. When enrollment is down, that puts a strain on their budget as well.
The Resolution was tabled because members of the Stipend Committee were unable to attend.
Once the weather is warmer and more consistent, Facilities Management will be repainting speed bumps across campus to be more visible and look less like crosswalks. In addition, a wheelchair-accessible swing will be installed by Lake Valentine. The funding for the swing is largely being covered by a grant, but the Student Senate is covering the cost of the cement.
A verdict was reached on the proposal for a Bethel Accounting Society Club that was presented Mar. 7. The pros of the resolution were presented by Amber Knudson and Rebekah Vliem. Knudson expressed that it is important for accounting students to have resources to turn to, and Vliem added that the popularity of the business major shows that this club could be appealing to both current and prospective students.
Student Senators Sam Cottington and Kylee Stoner presented the cons of this resolution. Cottington expressed that he did not have access to any numerical proof of interest among accounting students. He deemed this important, as clubs are seemingly dwindling in importance on Bethel’s campus. Stoner added that this club has the potential to take participation away from Bethel’s sole BSG-approved business club, Bethel Business and Economics Association.
Following the senators’ pros and cons, the floor was opened to further comments from meeting attendants. Alex Edstrom, the accounting student who is looking for BSG approval, responded to the previous comments.
“The accounting major is rigorous and when it comes time for tests, there’s a lot of groups that show up to help each other out,” Edstrom said. “I think we could promote it to have study sessions and add a social aspect to the major.”
He also added that an interest form has been sent out to accounting students, and they have received 25 responses stating interest in the club. Following Edstrom’s statements, Stoner voiced her support.
“Even though I conned this bill, I am in favor of it,” she said. “It creates a deeper sense of community in the accounting major.”
Following the discussion, senate members voted on the bill. The results were 14 in favor, 0 against, meaning the Bethel Accounting Society is a BSG-approved club.
The meeting concluded with a special election for those wishing to join the student senate. There was only one student looking for a position this time. This portion of the meeting was closed to non-senate members because a prospective senator was being interviewed for a position.
Executive Director elections
The election for Executive Chair of the Student Senate was held Mar. 28. The Clarion was not allowed to attend this portion of the meeting.
“We close all elections, and that is just for privacy” Executive Chair of Student Senate Carolyn Ziebol said. “BSG has to announce all the [Executive Directors] at once.”