USG Parliamentarian resigns, nomination announced

Elections, community day on horizon

Written By Alexander Popichak, USG Beat Writer

Notably absent from this week’s United Student Government (USG) meeting in the Lawrence Hall multipurpose room was Parliamentarian Zac Seymour. Seymour resigned Sunday, citing an internship opportunity with an advertising agency.

Seymour was elected to represent the School of Communication his freshman year and was appointed to the parliamentarian position in August by USG President Robert Bertha.

Seymour was the last executive cabinet member in his original position from the start of the 2017-18 school year. Since August, the recording secretary, press secretary, treasurer and vice president have all changed positions or left the organization entirely. Former recording secretary Shaniece Lawrence graduated, former press secretary Sabrina Bodon resigned, former treasurer Josh Croup became press secretary and former vice president Davion Heron resigned citing personal reasons.

The parliamentarian is tasked with ensuring compliance with parliamentary procedure and chairing the Rules Committee. After the meeting, Bertha announced senior creative writing major Matt Bauman as his nomination to fill Seymour’s seat. USG will vote on the nomination at the next meeting.

Bauman was elected to USG this year and has served on the Student Concerns Committee and as the chairman of the Pioneer Community Day (PCD) Committee.

At Monday’s meeting, senators primarily focused on the coming weeks’ worth of events and outreach.

Club requests for funds were due yesterday at 11:59 p.m. The Finance Committee will review budgets and make recommendations over the next weekend and set forth their proposals at the next meeting March 12.

According to Treasurer Justin Stocklas, clubs have been regularly spending their allotment and some clubs have asked to roll over their unspent funds to the next funding period.

Students wishing to run for a seat on the legislative body next year have until noon Friday, March 9 to turn in their petition. All students running for positions will be featured on March 21 at the USG Debate at the Center for Media Innovation.

Croup will be recording senator candidates’ statements next week for broadcast during the debate. Candidates for president and vice president will debate at the live broadcast. The student body is welcome to attend a watch party adjacent to the studio at 8 p.m.

Elections for the 2018-2019 USG will be held March 26-30. In the past, USG has set up online voting through PointSync and posted tables with laptops as “voting booths.”

In addition to the upcoming election and debate, senators discussed PCD, an annual event where students volunteer for various organizations around the Pittsburgh area. Bauman said the committee will hold sign-ups starting today outside the Point Cafe. The tables will be held Wednesdays from 4-7 p.m. and Mondays from 2-4 p.m. until the event on April 7.

Bauman told the legislative body he hopes to have at least 100 people sign up to volunteer. Following the community service portion of the day, USG will provide entertainment and food to volunteers.

Dean of Student Life Michael Gieseke announced that the Information Technology (IT) department will be holding a forum Friday, March 16 to get feedback from students on the redesigned PointWeb portal. PointWeb is a web portal used by students to schedule courses, view financial statements and access advising and degree documents.

Tim Wilson, associate vice president of IT visited USG on Jan. 8 and announced his intent to hear from student-driven focus groups on their changes.

“We did those changes [to PointWeb] in a closed vacuum, in that we made those changes we felt needed to be made,” Wilson said Jan. 8. “What we are gonna do now is we would like to convene some focus groups so we can get some feedback.”

At that same Jan. 8 meeting, Bauman asked Wilson about installing web-access printers in the Boulevard Apartments, Pioneer and Conestoga halls. Bauman reported at Monday’s meeting that after going through the necessary channels, these printers should be available to students “in the near future.”

Next week, USG will approve funding allocations and will vote on Bertha’s nomination of Bauman for parliamentarian.

Disclosure: Press Secretary Josh Croup also serves as co-sports editor.