USG to possibly add graduate students

Written By Sarah Gibson, USG Beat Writer

The United Student Government (USG) hosted another guest speaker at their weekly meeting. Allison Harnden, the Nighttime Economy Manager for the City of Pittsburgh, discussed how important socialization is to the health of an individual and why it was so important that the city of Pittsburgh has vibrant and safe spaces to socialize and boost the economy.

USG also recognized the Funeral Services Club. The leader of the new club, Brighid Shanahan, noted that most people don’t even realize that Point Park has a funeral services major and that one of the goals surrounding the creation of the club was to reduce the stigma associated with the major. The last of the newly elected senators were also sworn in 

President Berlin mentioned that there were some graduate students wanting to get involved with USG, and he was trying to work out a system that would allow them to join, as the graduate students do not currently pay the student activities fee. He stated that USG controls how the student activity fee money is spent and that he would not want students who do not pay the fee to control the funds.

Senator Mathew Johnson raised a parliamentary inquiry during the Open Floor, requesting to know whether or not senators could choose which committee to be a part of. Parliamentarian Jess Wrzosek responded that while students had a say in what committee they were involved with, the situation that Senator Johnson was referencing was a special circumstance and that he had been removed from Rules Committee due to his own actions. After confirming that Senator Johnson wanted to discuss the situation in such a public setting. Parliamentarian Wrzosek said that Senator Johnson’s behavior in the Rules Committee meeting got to a point where she felt like she was “being bullied” by the senator.

She explained that, as a member with some experience, she expected Senator Johnson to understand that his talking point at that meeting “wasn’t going anywhere”, and she asked if he disagreed. He said that he did not, and that’s why he “stayed quiet” for the last portion of said meeting, a point that the Parliamentarian disagreed with.

Senator Johnson explained that his question had nothing to do with the incident and that he just wanted to know if senators could join a committee without assignment from the Vice President.

Wrzosek responded by saying that students’ committee preferences were taken into account in the poll that they send to the Vice President before being assigned a committee. This is done in order to make sure that all committees have enough members while still allowing students to serve a committee that they are passionate about. She also mentioned that students have the opportunity to switch committees if they don’t feel as if they fit on the one that they are assigned.

After further deliberation from Senator Johnson, Vice President Lake announced that a senator continuously raising points of parliamentary inquiry of a solved matter would be counted as disorderly conduct. Nothing further was said on the matter.