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Let’s Hear It For Henry: The Return Of CCSC

CCSC Bureau Chief Adam Kluge returns for the Spring semester, macchiato in hand, to report on the exciting developments in the room where it happens.

In the words of the elusive Madison Montgomery (see American Horror Story: Coven for reference), I bet you thought you’d seen the last of me.

Quibbles. Regardless of your personal stance on my coverage of the Columbia College Student Council last semester, I have returned for another five-month stint, and eagerly look forward to sharing major updates from the Satow Room with all those invested in the political hubbub that serves to infiltrate the quiet spaces of Columbia College.

A few things to make note of:

  1. CCSC meets at 8 PM in the Lerner Satow Room every Sunday evening. If you are at all interested in student government, or gaining further insight into the way in which Columbia’s largest undergraduate school operates, I would highly recommend attending one of these public meetings.
  2. If you have any suggestions pertaining to the ways in which you would like to see student political affairs covered by Bwog, I am always happy to chat with readers about my personal approach to covering CCSC. In an age where journalism can often be the most crucial link between the voice of the majority and the rest of the public, I am nothing if not receptive to your feedback

Anyway, on to the important stuff:

The Columbia College Student Council’s first meeting of the semester began as the meetings usually do — introductions and pleasant updates. That said, the absence of CCSC President Patricia Granda-Malaver (CC ’20) was noticeably felt, though VP for Policy Henry Feldman (CC ’21) did a brilliant job leading tonight’ meeting, with VP for Finance Sarah Radway (CC ’21) and VP for Communications Blessing Utomi (CC ’22) aiding Feldman in his running of the gathering.

While there were too many for me to list in full, major updates included:

  • University Senator Heven Haile (who, I might add, is brilliant in her consistent advocacy across campus from students of various socio-economic backgrounds) explained that the various senators are currently drafting a proposal within the Senate concerning student financial contributions. Senator Ramsay Eyre updated CCSC on the recent SAC (Columbia University Senate) retreat, and a Senate task-force on sustainability has been unanimously approved. Seriously, people. If you can only choose one issue to advocate for, choose the welfare of our world.
  • Financial Security and First Generation representative Jaine Archambeau spoke to the success of providing winter break meals to those students who remained on campus over the holidays
  • Student Services representative Aaron Hibshoosh explained his active efforts related to medical leave and course registrations, in order to reconcile the current situation, which finds those absent on leave struggling to enroll in courses by their designated registration time.

In the world of class councils, Senior Class President James Ritchie spoke about an event being held in Roone Arledge on Saturday, February 8th. Tickets should go live this week. Newly-elected Junior Class President (can I get a, woot woot, women in politics) Maryam Elsayed gave updates on upcoming Valentine’s Day events being hosted by the Class of 2021, so keep an eye out for updates pertaining to that programming. Additionally, First Year Class President Elle Harris explained that the Class of 2023 has secured 25 sets of LitHum books for low-income students, thanks to a partnership with Book Culture. Additionally, the First Year class is looking to organize a Galentine’s Day event, as well as an open-mic/coffeehouse event at the end of February. Get those songs and slam poems rehearsed, people.

Updates from the CCSC Executive Board: VP for Policy Henry Feldman gave updates pertaining to his ongoing role in textbook affordability and accessibility, which has finally been considered and discussed by various Columbia deans. All subsidized MetroCards have also been distributed. Newly dubbed “Miss Finance” Sarah Radway also spoke about further efforts to work on making LitHum books available to a larger group of students. Additionally, JCCC convened this morning to discuss potential funding for seven Columbia-affiliated student groups, with applications for co-sponsorship coming out soon. VP for Communications Blessing Utomi updated the Student Council on increased work with student engagement in Columbia Health.

Beyond CCSC updates, CCSC will begin to consider more representatives for the Honor Code Committee, as well as LionShare. Additionally, CCSC deliberated over a series of constitutional amendments. A proposal to add a transition meeting at the end of the academic year, in which newly-elected CCSC members might sit with their predecessors to gain a better sense of the responsibilities of their position was passed. Additionally, conversation spearheaded by Sophomore representative Brandon Shi concerned the potential ways in which CCSC might better accommodate transfer students at Columbia (potentially through a mixer or other social event), to make the transition for transfer students easier. This discussion heavily included deliberation over the lack of transfer student representation on CCSC, an ongoing problem with student government within the Columbia community. Race and Ethnicity representative Colby King also spoke to the performative element of many At-Large representatives, and the ways in which this might lead to the burdens places on a potential token transfer student representative. This notion was seconded by powerhouse Gender and Sexuality representative Kwolanne Felix. The voting related to the transfer motion will commence in the Spring election cycle.

There was also conversation concerning the title of the Financial Security and First Generation representative, given that that language is not consistent with that of FGLI students at Columbia University. In creating the title of First-Generation and Low-Income representative, CCSC might assure that that representative is a member of both communities so that their work might cater to the needs of FGLI students. Following voting related to the title change proposal, CCSC unanimously agreed to change the title.

Henry Feldman also delivered a lovely statement on support during times of loss and tragedy, like that endured by the Columbia-Barnard community over the course of the last month. That sentiment was followed by CCSC’s voting to sign-on to the Columbia Women of Color Pre-Law Society letter.

As always, there were additional topics mentioned throughout the meeting, but I am quite tired, and this was a lot. As mentioned above, I am always excited to hear feedback from Columbia students about Bwog’s reporting on CCSC. Until next time…

Where it all went down via Bwog Archives

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