Vice President Adilla Jamaludin criticizes state of Senate
On Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018 at 6:12 p.m., the ASUCD Senate meeting was called to order by Vice President Adilla Jamaludin. Senator Jesse Kullar was absent.
Guest speaker Sofia Molodanof, a fourth-year English major, gave a presentation on about a proposed Non-Instructional Days Policy, which would provide a day without class instruction or campus events before the start of finals to give students time to focus on well-being and practice self-care. This would entail two non-instructional days per quarter between the end of instruction and the start of final exams. It would not include weekends.
Molodanof stated that between the fall of 2012 and the fall of 2016 UC Davis had one non-instructional day each for Fall and Spring Quarters. However, beginning in the fall of 2016, changes were made due to student advocacy to end Saturday exams. This shortened Winter and Spring Quarters from 50 days to 48 days and rescheduled the required 146 days of instructions during the regular school year to avoid finals on Saturday to having finals on Friday.
Findings of these changes presented by Molodanof showed 83.6 percent of UC Davis students favored two non-instructional days per quarter prior to the beginning of finals. 44 percent reported academic performance was affected by stress in the past 12 months, which was 10.2 percent higher than the national average. 62.5 percent reported academics was traumatic/very difficult to manage during the past 12 months, which was 13 percent higher than the national average.
A proposal was made to set mental health services at UC Davis as a high priority. The Senate offered support for non-instructional days and encouraged the promotion of non-instructional days through petition signatures.
The Administrative Advisory Committee confirmed Gabriel Guerin, a fourth-year political science major, as AAC commissioner. Additionally, Manasa Gogineni, a first-year international relations major, was confirmed as Internal Affairs Commission commissioner.
Next, discussion over Senate Bill #26, an ASUCD bill to create a monetary reserve for the ASUCD Technology Reserve, commenced. The IAC and Business and Finance Commission approved this proposal unanimously. SB #26 passed the Senate without objection.
Next on the agenda was Senate Bill #31, an ASUCD bill to correct the structure and formatting of the Legislative Process section of the bylaws and to create transparency for ASUCD legislation that mentions members of the UC Davis community. After a lengthy discussion on the language and process of the bill ensued, the bill passed the Senate with amendments.
This was followed by work on Senate Bill #32, which is emergency legislation due to the lack of a BNF chairperson. SB #32 proposed the allocation of $980 from Senate Reserves to ASUCD Elections Committee to issue platform flyers during the 2018 Winter Quarter Elections. Items discussed included the number of flyers to print. The discussion also included the amount of current election reserves and if there was a sufficient amount to cover the election. After discussion, SB #32 was passed with amendments.
The Senate had a break at 8:12 p.m. Roll call was taken for new legislation and the status of previously passed legislation was signed.
Public discussion followed. Controller Jin Zhang spoke about the effectiveness of collaboration within the Senate.
“This is a privilege,” Zhang said. “It’s amazing what we can do in a week. If you’re not exhausted at the end of the week because of this position you’re not doing your job right. There needs to be more of this.”
During public discussion, commission chairs discussed senator attendance at commission meetings. IAC Chair Jacob Ganz said five out of 12 senators have not attended commission meetings this quarter. Jamaludin criticized the state of the Senate.
“It makes my blood boil to see this state of the table right now,” Jamaludin said. “I’m disappointed and upset. I’m leaving this table and I don’t know if you’re up for the job. I don’t want to yell but I feel like I have to. If the bills that come in every week are from the exec team that’s disappointing because that’s not an association that should be run by just the exec team. It’s run the by the senators and all the other units involved. Can you blame people when they say we don’t do anything? That’s the state of this table right now. Do me a favor and prove me wrong right now in six weeks.”
Written by: George Liao — firstname.lastname@example.org