This Monday, Barnard’s SGA heard from the Equity and Diversity Committee and the PR Committee about the work they’ve been doing and their visions for the future.
Another week, another SGA meeting. And, as surely as the sun rises over the New York skyline, another SGA coverage post. This Monday was chilly. It was finally starting to feel like November as I scrambled to Diana 504. But is there a better place to warm up from the cold than Diana 504 on a Monday evening? There is not.
As my fingers and toes defrosted (I was warm literally the second after I entered the building) the SGA made some pertinent announcements. They are summed up here!
- For Juniors – the Junior class event is this Wednesday at 7 pm on the lower level of Milstein. Attend for class bonding and general camaraderie.
- The Binder Drive has been opened another week. If you’d like a binder you have even more time to request one! Just fill out the interest form.
- The Queer/BIPOC movie night has also been pushed back from its original time (it would’ve conflicted with the tree lighting ceremony.) But keep your eyes/ears/etc. peeled for a rescheduled date.
- There are resources for students to reach out to express concerns/ideas about sustainability and dining. You’re encouraged to reach out to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Applications to the SGA Endowment Fund are still open. The fund was created to finance projects that enhance the student experience and positively impact the Barnard community – accepted projects have included new printers installed in residence halls, increased Diana Cafe seating, and the purchase of reusable thermoses for the entire student body. If you’ve been sitting on Barnard’s next genius initiative or you simply want to enter your Shark Tank era, you’re invited to propose a project!
There were also two announcements that were frequently mentioned by members of SGA, deserving, I feel, a special shoutout. Both are, in keeping with the theme, wonderfully wintery.
Firstly, the Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place this Thursday! There will be food and drink (hot chocolate), a capella, and enough string lights to fill a small swimming pool. Get there from 5:00 to 5:30 pm to collect merch and by 6:00 pm to hear a capella and speeches from various administrators. Or camp out on the street the night before because you physically cannot contain your seasonal excitement.
Second oft-mentioned announcement of the week: sign up for Fireside Chat with President Sian Beilock! Fireside Chat is a bi-annual SGA initiative to connect the President and students, allowing for conversation and questions. This semester, a special focus will be paid to registration, housing, and employment issues. The application is due Wednesday, November 30th at 11:00 am.
Monday evening, SGA heard reports from both the Equity and Inclusion Committee and the Public Relations Committee.
The Equity and Inclusion Committee was led by Mariame Sissoko (BC ‘24), Aurelia Tan (BC ‘25), and Jenniffer Koita (BC ‘24). The committee meets once a week and operates primarily in small, identity-based focus groups to discuss issues and generate ideas.
They outlined their overall goals as a committee:
- Expanding equity and inclusion at Barnard to include more marginalized groups on campus.
- Create comprehensive programming and events with the input of students impacted.
- Address student concerns with the administration and provide a student perspective on long-term initiatives from the administration.
There are three programs that the committee has been planning on the horizon. While they’re all still in the planning stage, the committee shared their initial ideas.
- Bold, Beautiful, Black at Barnard is a three-day event celebrating Black students outside of Black History Month. It will include a photoshoot, involvement of Black alumni, and a diaspora dinner. Themes range from Black joy to history and connectivity.
- Lunar New Year is another three day event, this time in partnership with Campus Life, the DEI Council, and the Barnard administration. It will begin shortly into the next semester, involving a diaspora dinner and an Asian art fair to promote both Asian student artists and Asian artists in NYC. The committee expressed the importance of having Asian clubs and events as a Barnard community, separate from the larger Columbia clubs and organizations across the street.
- Ramadan Day will be held in partnership with the DEI Council, involving a hosted dinner in the Diana Cafe and a giveaway of hijabs and hair gowns.
The Equity and Inclusion Committee is also involved in smaller-scale events, like movie nights and the Binder Drive. They encourage everyone to be on the lookout for Queer Prom, which will happen next semester as a celebration of Queer joy outside of Pride month.
Then, the SGA Public Relations Committee presented their report of the earlier semesterly Town Hall. The PR Committee is led by Anique Edwards (BC ‘24). Their main goals are continued outreach and expanding the SGA social media presence, planning the Town Hall, and organizing the upcoming Fireside Chats. As they gather the notes taken during the Town Hall, they’ll be responsible for disseminating student feedback and information gathered during the event. As for the Fireside Chats – they’ve already received a good amount of applications on the form, so they’re looking forward to a well-attended event. It will take place for two hours, from 1 to 3 pm. President Beilock is only available for the first hour, so the second will be dedicated to a casual student-held discussion over lunch.
Tree lighting photoshop via Bwog Staff