USG recognizes Christian club, discusses ongoing elections


Photo by Robert Berger

USG Presidential candidates Hayley Hoffman and Kaylee Kearns debate at the CMI last Wednesday.

Written By Alexander Popichak, USG Beat Writer

As Point Park’s United Student Government (USG) enters its election week, the legislative body recognized a new club.

The club approved Monday, The U, is a branch of a youth group at Pittsburgh-based Amplify Church. Amplify is a non-denominational church and branches of The U have been set up at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Duquesne University.

“The mission there is to reach as many people and bring as many people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ,” Sarah Pais, club president, said after the Monday meeting. “I feel like Point Park really needs that right now so the goal is to complete that mission. To bring the word of God to as many people as possible.”

USG has recognized another non-denominational Christianity-based club, the Body of Christian Fellowship, since 2004. The Body is associated with the Coalition for Christian Outreach (CCO), a Pittsburgh-based nondenominational campus ministry organization. According to Body president Carrie Reale, the CCO hires campus ministers to carry out its mission of spreading the message of the Gospel.

“Both groups [The U and the Body] want to bring essentially a college youth group onto campus,” Pais said. “We are just going to do it in a less traditional way so we would just attract a different group of people. The Body tends to attract people who grew up in the church and already know and have the background. We are trying to attract the people who maybe never heard of it or don’t know anything about the Bible.”

Pais, a freshman mass communication major, said the organization will probably not start meeting until the start of the fall 2018 semester, but said the group already has a support base of 20-25 students.

In addition to recognizing The U, the legislative body discussed this week’s elections and last week’s USG debate. According to Josh Croup, USG Press Secretary and U-View News and Sports Director, the stream of the debate has reached 1,500 people since Wednesday.

“We had a good enough crowd [at the Center for Media Innovation watch party] that there were enough students to consume all of the pizza that we had,” Croup said Monday.

There are two candidates for president, President Pro-Tempore Hayley Hoffman and Vice President Kaylee Kearns.

Hoffman, a sophomore stage management major, said her goal for USG in the coming year is to improve the effectiveness of the organization in addressing student concerns.

“I want to see this organization flourish,” Hoffman said after the meeting. “I want to bridge that gap between administration and the rest of the university. It’s not just bridging the gap between administration and USG, it’s bridging that gap between all students and the administration.”

Hoffman repeatedly criticized the leadership of current USG President Robert Bertha during Wednesday’s debate. In particular, Hoffman took issue with communication overall and said that senators were not as involved as they could be in decision-making processes.

Kearns, a sophomore sports, arts and entertainment major, said her goal is to focus on the concerns of commuter students and “fixing” communication.

“There needs to be a clear line,” Kearns said after the meeting Monday. “If something is coming from Dean [of Students Keith] Paylo’s office, and it’s trying to get out to the club leaders it needs to be quickly passed through USG if that’s the way it needs to go. It needs to be clear and concise from the beginning to the end.”

Kearns focused on continuing USG’s outreach during the debate and said her current position as vice president has prepared her to work as USG president. Kearns said she wants to take the organization further by holding fast to the organization’s goal of representing and serving students.

Both Kearns and Hoffman have served on USG for two years and under two presidents – current president Bertha and former president Blaine King.

The only candidate running for USG Vice President is Senator Brittany Arp. Arp is a freshman political science and legal studies double major and said she is running because she wants to strengthen USG’s relation with clubs and organizations.

“My vision for the organization would be, first of all, to get more senators,” Arp said Monday. “More senators, more representation. And then work with everyone on campus – whether they be administration, Culinart, club leaders, just everyone.”

In addition to the livestream, USG also aired profiles of all senator candidates during the breaks of the show.

Elections take place through Friday on PointSync at All students registered for the Fall 2018 semester are eligible to vote – graduating seniors cannot unless they are going to be continuing onto graduate school.

Disclosure: Sarah Pais is the co-online editor for The Globe.