CCSC Talks Friendship, Bias, and Bylaws In The Satow Room
Written by Nadra Rahman
Sunday nights are always a good time with the CCSC crew – last night was no different. Bwogger Nadia Rahman reports back from the Satow Room on CCSC happenings, from dinner to elections.
Last night’s CCSC meeting (the second of the year) was dominated by logistical concerns, snappy retorts, and our favorite topic—bylaw review. If you don’t love motions within motions, why are you reading this?
Friend2Friend & A Cute Dinner
President Nathan Rosin introduced “Friend2Friend,” a recently-developed three hour training on recognizing and responding to classmates’ signs of distress. According to Rosin, Alice! had offered to facilitate a training for CCSC members, given adequate attendance. By and large, the response to this offer was positive. 2020 VP James Ritchie claimed not doing the training would be “disingenuous,” as several members had campaigned on issues surrounding mental health advocacy and awareness, adding, “This is the easiest thing that we could do and also the least effort thing that we could do.”
While others agreed with the sentiment, it was harder to find a time that would be convenient for all members—and some questioned whether holding the training during the usual time for general body meetings would inconvenience Alice! (Rosin assured otherwise.) At some point, the always-gluttonous CCSC turned to discussing food, with 2020 Rep Grant Pace suggesting the group “have a cute little meal together” before the three hour training; USenator Jay Rappaport concurred, but turned the cute little meal into a full-blown dinner.
After numerous members raised concerns about privacy, it was decided the press and non-CCSC members would be barred from the training.
Ultimately, there was a motion to have dinner at 7, begin the training at 7:30, and end sometime around 10:30; the motion passed. In further discussions with Alice!, Rosin would broach the topic of holding a concurrent Friend2Friend training for any student leaders interested (though Alice! does facilitate open trainings).
“I’m a very unbiased person.”
The Group Adjudication Board is new this year, and is intended to keep student groups accountable when they violate university policy. The judicial board, which will consist of student representatives from all councils and governing boards, will meet a few times a year to discuss cases and pass rulings. Last night, several CCSC members put themselves forth as potential representatives to the new board.
VP Campus Life Alex Cedar stressed the insight into student life his position gave him, and mentioned his related role in the Greek Life Judicial Board. Ritchie, also a candidate, made a somewhat outlandish claim: “I’m a very unbiased person.” He also made a dig at Cedar, calling his claims a “misnomer,” and saying of himself, ““I don’t have any big claims to make about what I do know.” Pre-Professional Rep Rafael Ortiz, the third candidate, said his experience on a similar board at his first college made him uniquely qualified. Finally, 2019 Rep Sofia Petros based her argument on her aim to give certain groups, some of which do poorly in adjudication processes, adequate representation.
Members voted by secret ballot, electing Petros as the representative and Cedar as the alternate.
In keeping with the E-Board’s campaign promise to revamp campus life and community building, Cedar announced a few upcoming events and initiatives:
- The Great Columbia College Giveaway is this Wednesday, September 27, from 2 to 5 pm on the Lerner Ramps. Cedar cited the relative scarcity of College students clad in spirit gear, and announced approximately 240 T-shirts would be available for the giveaway, in addition to treats from Pressed Juicery and Insomnia Cookies.
- CCSC is co-sponsoring an advance screening of the dark comedy Happy Death Day. The free screening, which will include giveaways, is to be held on Thursday, October 5, from 8 to 11 pm at AMC Loews Lincoln Square 13.
- This year, Homecoming will be preceded by a pep rally that will overtake the lawns and a few hall lobbies; the pep rally will feature student group performances and inflatables (evidently a source of excitement).
Throughout this update, Cedar used a few great words, like “emblazoned” and “traipsed.”
Time and Bylaws Wait For No Man
Bylaw review occurs once a year, and this year’s process began last night. Most of the proposed bylaws changes were cosmetic—such as striking out sentences referring to now-nonexistent documents, objects, or events. Other changes stem from last spring’s creation/abolition of positions, so new sections will have to be written up pertaining to the future Disabilities, Race & Ethnicity, Gender & Sexuality, International Students, and Financial Security & First Generation Reps. At one point, Rosin declared, “I love international students!”
A few proposals were accompanied by further debate. Should those facing the Elections Adjudication Board, and fearing bias, be allowed to remove up to two members of the board, as is currently codified? USenator Omar Khan supported the existing language, saying “I am a senior and I’m a pretty partial person,” and further elaborating that the language honestly acknowledged the potential of biased relationships. VP Policy Nicole Allicock suggested changing the number of potential removals to one.
The night’s major proposal related to the rules of general body meetings, with Rosin suggesting they replace the section with updated, more specific rules that have already been distributed to CCSC members.
Perhaps 2018 Rep Matthew Neky put it best when he said, “I don’t think bylaws should be that much of a priority”—the process should go as smoothly and efficiently as possible so more time can be spent serving the student body.
- Elections for 2021 and the International Students Rep are coming up! Vote via LionLink starting this Wednesday. Reminder: Voting for the International Students Rep is open to all CC students.
- The Elections Adjudication Board is to be chaired by 2018 President John Avendano and populated by four other seniors. Rosin teased upcoming reform of the elections process, to be further articulated after this cycle ends.
- CCSC unanimously agreed to co-sponsor the Chinese Students Club’s upcoming event, Night Market, with $25.
- Policy: Last year’s proposed travel fund is live, and open to both student groups and individual students.
- Finance: In collaboration with Inclusion & Equity, Finance is working on uncovering more about the closed, hierarchical nature of Columbia clubs. A survey is expected to go out soon.
- Senate: Repurposed space in Lerner Hall might be ready “much sooner than we expected.” Expect more details in coming weeks!
- Sandwich Ambassador: A CU-specific Restaurant Week is (potentially) in the books.
- The grand opening of the new Stephen Donaldson Lounge, an LGBTQ space, is to be Wednesday, September 27 in Schapiro Hall. Light food and refreshments will be provided.
- 2019: Lion Hunt, a 2019-specific game of Assassins with the grand prize of a Beats pill, is starting soon (sign up here). The grade’s proposed farm share program is also almost ready to be launched.
- 2018: A time-honored tradition, Lerner Pub, is taking place this Thursday, September 28, from 9 pm to 12 am in the Lerner Party Space.
Image via Wikimedia Commons