SGA appoints new senators and executive cabinet

Written By Sarah Gibson, SGA Beat Writer

The Student Government Association (SGA) of Point Park University started its first meeting of the fall 2020 semester by appointing four new senators to the legislative body. The senators, Sophie Burkholder, Maggie Hier, Jordyn Hronec and Mya Jackson, have all had previous experience with the organization as senators and members of the executive cabinet. The motion to appoint these senators ran unopposed by any member of the body. 

Following the appointment, President Dennis McDermott revealed who would be filling the roles in the executive cabinet for his administration. Cole D’Alicandro was chosen for the role of Recording Secretary, Kasey Newman will be fulfilling the role of Treasurer, Zachariah Washington was chosen for Parliamentarian, and John Ziegler, in his debut year partaking in SGA, will be the Communications Director. The motion to pass this executive cabinet went unopposed. 

President McDermott then reminded those present that election forms to become an SGA senator were open until Friday, and that voting would be taking place some time next week. The senators voted in during that election will be able to attend their first meeting as senators on Monday, September 14. President McDermott informed the legislative body that his summer report will be published soon, but gave a brief overview of the things he helped accomplish during the summer, including but not limited to interviewing and choosing executive cabinet members, forming the COVID-19 student committee, and convincing the school to add remote learning and pass/no credit options for the fall semester, a change he claimed the university administration has given SGA full credit for. 

Vice President Bryce Hayzlett also gave a brief report on his summer activities involving SGA, which included speaking with Kurt Kumler, Director of the Counseling Center, in order to address numerous complaints given by Point Park students regarding the quality of care available. 

Treasurer Newman also gave a report, centered around the implementation of prevention and education lessons regarding Title IX in City-University Life classes while also crafting a guidebook for student organizations. Her goals for the semester include budget transparency, fair and equitable treatment of all clubs, and to be a student liaison between SGA, SAIL, and student organizations. 

Recording Secretary D’Alicandro’s report consisted of going through student concerns sent into SGA and digitizing them, and Communications Director Ziegler mentioned plans for a possible collaboration with WPPJ, an organization of which D’Alicandro is the General Manager, for a possible podcast. 

Following the reports of senators, it was time to nominate and vote on who would fulfill the role of President Pro-Tempore. Burkholder was nominated by Senator Jackson and ran uncontested and unopposed in the final vote. 

Finally, President McDermott presented to the legislative body a set of COVID-19 guidelines specifically geared towards members of the organization to hold them to a higher standard. Rules on this list include a limit of seven people in the SGA office not including the President and Vice President and the possibility of a senator being censured or removed if revealed that they were not following university health and safety guidelines. 

President Pro-Tempore Burkholder filed the motion to recognize these rules which was seconded by Jackson, and then unanimously voted in. After giving the senators the opportunity to speak during an open floor, the meeting was adjourned, with the next meeting scheduled for Monday, September 14, as September 7 is Labor Day.