Bwog’s Dane Cook (yep, it’s the same name, let’s just move on) reports from last night’s meeting.
The unceasing plea for student support at Columbia sporting events found voice yet again at the outset of Monday’s SGA meeting. Assistant director of sports marketing, Dan Spiegel, attended to encourage council members to attend Saturday’s homecoming football game against the University of Pennsylvania Quakers. Spiegel pointed out that the athletic department represents an especially unique element of the Columbia-Barnard relationship, and also noted the important contributions Barnard athletes bring to their teams under Columbia’s name. Citing lack luster attendance at last year’s event, he appealed to the council, “This is not just Columbia’s homecoming: this is your homecoming as well.” With the provision of free shuttle service and free admittance, Columbia athletics hopes more Barnard students will be at Baker this weekend to unleash the roar.
Sharmin Ahmed, VP of Finance, took the floor to present recommendations following last Sunday’s co-sponsorship meeting. Seven groups pitched requests for co-sponsorship from SGA for specific club events, and after reviewing the appraisals the council allocated funds accordingly. Engineers Without Borders, the Chinese Students Club, Kappa Phi Lambda, the Muslim Students Association, and Club Dimensions can all expect their piece of the pie along with this year’s CU Dance Marathon. Sadly, however, the Table Tennis Club may have to go elsewhere for the $1,400 they sought to fund training from world class table tennis extraordinaire Wang Chen.
Council committee appointments were also finalized, although – for the sake of protecting applicants’ personal information – most of the undertakings remained off-the-record. Nevertheless, SGA President Katie Palillo expressed the importance of such appointments: “These are people on the field level of creating policy, gathering information, talking to students.”
After Wednesday’s meeting with the Board of Trustees, further discussion of Barnard’s ranking in U.S. News (30th among liberal arts colleges) involved a statistical breakdown of the ranking compared to other schools and addressed how it was calculated. Low scores given by presidents of peer institutions (averaging 3.9 out of 5), along with less faculty resources, fewer full time professors, and more classes sizes over 50 students all contributed to Barnard’s final standing. Also, Barnard ranked 89th in alumni donations with only 30% of graduates giving back, while other schools revel in the lavish 45% to 49% range.
The meeting came to a close after a brief show n’ tell of SGA’s recently retrofitted website. To a smattering of applause, Director of Technology Karen Kwan toured the site complete with pictures and bios of council members. And if a slideshow marquee of scenic campus photos tickles your fancy, SGA would love for you to check out their new strong, beautiful website.