Get your weekly SGA update here! This week: the bi-annual Desserts After Dark Survey results!

Barnard’s Student Government Association met briefly this Monday night to hear from junior Flosha Liyana, Vice President for Campus Life, who released and broke down the Fall 2019 Desserts After Dark results. Desserts After Dark is an anonymous bi-annual survey distributed to the Barnard student body that aims to collect feedback on campus issues in exchange for a free dessert sponsored by SGA (be sure to be on the lookout for the Spring 2020 survey!)

Ms. Liyana kicked off the meeting by tackling the background and demographics of the population of those who took the survey, all 479 of them. The population was predominantly first-years.

SGA accessibility and recruitment was the first realm the survey at hand. 69 percent of those surveyed were aware that external SGA meetings are open to the public; 45 percent of students were not aware that there is open floor-time at meetings for discourse and questions, something the Association urges every Barnard student to utilize if they see fit. The utilization of utilizing Facebook versus email to receive SGA news also came into question, with a drastic drop in last year’s 92 percent of SGA news being seen from Facebook — Ms. Liyana theorizes it is because of a lack of Facebook usage among first years this school year. In this vein, a reported 40.8 percent of students think SGA could aim for better publicizing of events and campus news.

The next topic at hand was Barnard food and dining. Food quality, quantities of food, pricing, allergens, dietary restriction food availability, dining hall hours, and the availability of to-go items were ranked in terms of their satisfaction, with only the availability of packaged to-go items falling short. Clearly there is room to grow, but overall satisfaction is high, with the best dining hall/cafe feedback being seen from Peet’s Coffee in Milstein. Halal and Kosher food options were met with high satisfaction, apart from some lacking signage and labeling in dining halls about what is and is not Halal or Kosher. Vegan selections were met with mild satisfaction, with needs for more labeling/signage and protein options. Overall satisfaction with Barnard dining is high, with key complaints around high pricing, labeling and signage, and to-go options.

Ms. Liyana went on to cover survey results of Campus First Generation/Low Income (FLI) and sustainability resources on campus. The FLIP Library at Barnard, which was started just a year ago, is utilized by 43 survey-takers. There was a lack of awareness of the FLIP Library at Butler — only 10 of 111 FLI students surveyed had been to it. The Food Pantry at Columbia has also been a massive success on campus this year, with high rates of usage among the FLI community. In terms of sustainability, that 38 percent of survey-takers believe that Barnard has made substantial progress in bettering sustainable practices, with only 9 percent saying Barnard has done nothing/very little to improve. Overall, awareness of offered FLI and sustainability resources were well received and were very well known amongst by survey-takers.

A dessert after dark via Max Pixel