This is the first in a series of weekly blogs updating students on the happenings of the Student Government Association (SGA) in their weekly meetings. 

As all good, serious governmental meetings do, last Wednesday’s SGA meeting began with a rousing rendition of happy birthday and a round of cupcakes for all. Festivities aside, other lesser matters were also on the table during the meeting. 

Here’s five things you should know:

  • Adam Engleman, a senior at Western and SGA’s current president, shared several pertinent bits of news in his weekly report, including that Western’s Presidential Search Committee will formalize its list of three finalist candidates after three days of consecutive semifinalist interviews are held on Zoom beginning Thursday, Feb. 17. The top three candidates will be announced after the selection and confirmation of candidate interest on Saturday, Feb. 19. Stakeholder meetings and interviews for the three finalists, including one or potentially two student sessions (as scheduling allows), will be announced soon for dates in March. 
  • President Engleman also shared that Western’s Board of Trustees has approved the request for funding (RFP) assembled by SGA to obtain security cameras. In combination with the slated $1.8 million lighting upgrades on campus (to be paid for by a maintenance request through the state of Colorado) the estimated combined cost of the dual safety projects approaches $2 million. The cameras alone have been budgeted for up to $200,000, although their total cost has been previously estimated at $65,000 to $130,000. SGA will be allocating $20,000 of its own funding to assist with the purchase and installation of cameras, and placing cameras in the dorm parking lots will be the top priority. 
  • YikYak, a mobile social media app currently only available for iPhones that allows users to share anonymous posts with users in a five-mile radius, is back. The app, originally created in 2013, was shut down in 2017 amid widespread concerns of cyberbullying. Gary Pierson, Western’s Dean of Students, brought concerns before SGA regarding reports of potential bullying and inappropriate references to specific student’s names. Dean Pierson also offered that Western’s Marketing and official social media accounts are working to publish positive social media content around mental health and wellness in the interest of counteracting negative social media content. 
  • And finally, Jessica Cusick, the Programming and Marketing Coordinator for the Center for the Arts Crested Butte (CACB) and a recent Western alum, came to talk to SGA about building out a collaboration between students and the Center. Ideas pitched by SGA members included cross-posting CACB events on Western’s social media accounts like EPIC Mentors and LEAD, potentially arranging shuttles for late-night, sober transportation, and partnering with campus artistic organizations like the Art League and the Council for Creative Expression (CCE). A list of CACB’s upcoming events can be found HERE.
  • There is no SGA meeting on Feb. 16, but look out for our post about the Feb. 23 meeting!