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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato


Page address:

70th MSSA Senate

February 5, 2003

Meeting called order by Vice President Raza

Roll Call
Senators Present

Mary Scheider 14-0-0, Joseph Finn 12-0-0, Faraz Khan 3-1-0, Rich Stangl 2-0-0, Rajendra K. Penugonda 19-0-0, Jessica Boyd 19-0-0, Katie Garrity-18-0-1, Andy Braam 3-0-0, Alex Boyce 19-0-0, C. Rhys Gaffer 17-0-2, Kail Decker 6-0-0, Anand Agarwal 16-3-0, Gordana Copic 16-1-2, Irfan Bangash 19-0-0, Celeste Hollerud 17-1-1, Rebecca Pollack 13-0-0, Ian Radtke 19-0-0, Thomas Handwerk 7-0-1, Jayson Read 14-0-0, Megan Brandt 13-1-0

Senators Absent

Katie Hjulberg 12-1-0

Executive Staff Present

President Joe Muggli, Vice President Ali Raza

Approval of Agenda Graduate Senator elections to follow Officer Reports. Addition of

Senator Garrity, Senator Copic

Elections-Allied Health & Nursing, College of Education, McElroy, Undeclared, Off-Campus,


Approval of Minutes (2-5-03)

Officer Reports

President Joe Muggli

Appointments: Enrollment Management Committee-Andy Braam, Academic Affairs-Andy Braam, Rich Stangl, Student Affairs Vice President Search-Joe Muggli.

We still need one student for Enrollment Management and one student for the Diversity Task Force.

I met with Dr. Hersrud yesterday to set the agenda for Meet and Confer. If you would like to attend the next Meet & Confer, it is on Valentine’s Day.

If you have any suggestions for Commencement speakers, let me know.

The Hockey game on Saturday was fun. We wasted UMD and Ali and I got bobble heads, and now I will be giving the bobble head away. For the next home series against UND should we sell tickets out of the hub or at the Civic Center?

Don’t forget Lobby Day. I hope it is all going pretty well signing up people. We will be leaving at 10:15 and will be returning around 3:15. Students should check in here in the senate office around 9:45. The Battle of the Bands is next Wednesday at 7:00 P.M. I will be a judge. Hopefully, the bands don’t hurt my ears, because I have to stay the entire time.

Senator Finn-Did you talk to students about getting us out of classes?

President Muggli-An email was sent out to all faculty and staff.

Senator Gaffer-What time is Meet & Confer?

Vice President Ali Raza

Lobby Day Rally-Tomorrow noon! This will be on the radio, TV, Dr. Davenport, Athletic Director Buisman, many speakers-we want to inform the students about how big this is and how much difference they can make. The Legislative Affairs Coordinator has been working very hard on this.

Student Events Team will be helping. Try to get people to attend and to come to Lobby Day. This is your foremost duty. If we have numbers there it will make a difference. Take lobby day posters and put them in

your classes.

Senator Penugonda-Open Forum follow-up?

Vice President Raza-Top priority of administration is to try to keep tuition from going up. We will be having a forum on priorities-let us know your top three priorities

Senator Penugonda-Do you think Off-Campus and Res Hall senators can reach out to more students and get them to attend ?

Vice President Raza-Definitely, get students in res halls, tell them how much fun it will be. There are many key people that can get a lot of people to attend.

Senator Penugonda-There are not many countries that are being represented in ISA. How could this be improved?

Vice President Raza-Talk to people from these countries and I will talk to them about being part of ISO.

Elections-College of Graduate Studies

Candidates: Beth Pollack, Jeremy Casper

Ms. Pollack-I am a Political Science Grad Student. I have been involved in the community, Phi Sigma Alpha, believe I know what is important to MSU students. Actions are important to help create the MSU atmosphere. I am willing to commit time.

Mr. Casper-I am an Electrical Engineering major. I have been part of the MSU community for five years. I am also a Grad Assistant in Electrical Engineering. Would like to represent grad students and make sure their views are being heard. I am willing to make time for senate. I would like to be a spatula, I would like to be involved in Legislative Affairs and SAC.

Senator Gaffer-Is there a particular project you would like to bring to this body?

Mr. Casper-I am trying to help with graduate assistantship stipends. It is necessary to have quality grad assistants that do teaching labs.

Ms. Pollack-More focus should be on trying to get students involved early on. It is important to have involvement for your resume.

Senator Boyd-Time commitment, we have meetings at 3:00 on Wed. and senate can go late. You need to do office hours and be on another committee, do you have the time?

Ms. Pollack-The time commitment is why I waited until now to be involved because you do have to be committed.

Mr. Casper-Last semester I had 12 credits, this semester I have more time. Time commitment is not a problem.

Senator Garrity-If you did not win would you still want to be involved in committee?.

Mr. Casper-Yes I went to the Capitol today and I would like to serve on Legislative Affairs.

Ms. Pollack-Yes, I would like to be come involved. Committees are very important.

Senator Copic-What do you think we could do to get people aware of senate?

Ms. Pollack-I transferred here from University of St. Thomas-comparing that and here, the senate was much more active and you knew who they were.

Mr. Casper-In some ways I have heard about Senate, but there needs to be better communication, but

we also have a very apathetic student body. MSSA could do a better job of advertising.

Senator Read-If you were a kitchen utensil, what would you be?

Mr. Casper-Spatula- Something that is used a lot.

Ms. Pollack-Spork, many uses, cut things up.

Senator Penugonda-MSSA does not go out to the student body-how would you get them out there.?

Ms. Pollack-Individual clubs-speaking to them. By making sure that the website is updated and working with the Reporter.

Mr. Casper-One thing that could be done-devote a section in the Reporter of what went on at the weekly senate meeting. Also email, student organizations-make sure that MSSA gives the student organizations time to know what is going on.

Mr. Casper-No problem with time commitment, willing to serve on committees appropriately,

Would like to represent all students in all accounts. Overall be an advocate for graduate students.

Ms. Pollack-I m involved actively in many areas. I believe in commitment. I am a good representative for the College of Graduate Studies.

Elected: Jeremy Casper, College of Graduate Studies

Senator Reports

Science, Engineering & Technology Andy Braam

It is an honor to speak before the senate. I have been involved in campus politics this year. It

has been educational and I have learned a lot. The biggest problem I see around is apathy and

lack of participation. There should not have been an open seat. It is too bad that there are not more students that will get involved. I am trying to get students involved in Lobby Day-some students don’t know there is a state capitol. I have three students on my list that will be going. Lobby Day is important; I am disappointed that other students do not understand that 40% tuition increase is not acceptable. That could be nearly $800 more. I may not be here next year because I have to pay the bills. My constituents do not understand where the money goes. I hope I don’t find out at budget time that we can’t talk about numbers because it is not politically incorrect. I think there is too much emphasis on sports. Politics of sports is that tuition would have to be $20, 000 before they would cut sports. I can’t stand here without saying something about Mandatory Insurance either-that was not a good idea. It says that we recommended approving Mandatory Insurance, I like health insurance, I just object to mandatory. It makes school more expensive. It says that there will be financial aid for insurance, but I don’t think there will be financial aid. $625 for insurance-how good is it if you can’t afford to pay it? College is expensive enough, why do we want to make it more. The argument-people get sick and drop out of school-there are many things that affect college students. Credit card debt, alcoholism etc. Also, I hope that I can represent my constituents the best I can but I also want to represent people that can’t be here because they can’t afford it.

Senator Penugonda-We have a problem getting people to attend Lobby Day-now that you are involved in Senate do you understand the challenges in getting people involved?

Senator Braam-I understood this before, I helped with College Democrats, getting students involved is pretty hard. I knew what senate does. Students need to be informed, people in power now are making

decisions that will affect you long after they are gone.

Senator Boyd-Last semester we had several presentations from Christine Connolly, there is a lot of

misinformation out there, would you consider meeting with her?

Senator Penugonda-When you were elected you were asked if you would keep your personal opinions

aside, it seems that you have ideas on Health Insurance-did you try to get more information?

Senator Braam-I looked in the folder to try and get more information. I know International

students have to have it, but I still think it is a bad idea.

Senator Read-Are these your views, or your constituents?

Senator Braam-Some of my constituents would rather not have money spent on the Vagina Monologue.

Senator Stangl-In regards to student athletes, our education should come first, equally important is self improvement, athletes do work very hard on that.

Senator Braam-The answer is simple-a million bucks! But a million dollars is a lot of money. We have a responsibility to our constituents to say no to any budget increases. To properly represent our constituents is to not raise student fees.

Senator Boyd-I agree but don’t you think that these programs enhance diversity?

Senator Braam-Yes, but should it be only rich minorities that get into college? Is diversity something

that is bought and sold?

College of Business Faraz Khan

I was in a meeting with Miles Smalling last Thursday; the College of Business needs a representative for the Student Relations Coordinator position to represent the MSSA on the interviews. IBM initiative in College of Business, we will be meeting with them after spring break. I sent email to officers of Finance and Accounting to see if their members want to share information with us. We can ask them to bring their issues to senate and be in the gallery. I got follow ups from Presidents of

Finance and International Business-they are willing to accommodate us. I am waiting for a follow-up.

Senator Gaffer-You were talking about the laptop initiative, is this something there is discussion on?

Senator Khan-I discussed policy with Professor Dickey-they stated that students now have a mandatory policy to purchase a laptop; students have a $125 lap top fee. Students only have

two options-existing College of Business laptop or are you going to buy one? This might be hard for the students, this initiative is good, but mandatory should be considered.

Senator Decker-The College of Business is accredited and this is necessary for that.

Senator Khan-To my knowledge, it might be because they have a partnership with Dell.

Senator Copic-Would you yield time to answer the question?

Senator Copic-Business majors are supposed to buy them, but you can buy your own as long as it has all the things necessary. The College of Business was recognized before the laptop initiative was in.

Senator Khan-Last semester, many students were told they had to purchase this computer or

get approval from the chair. I will reconfirm that.

Senator Boyd-Is the laptop fee per class or semester?

Mr. Khan-Per semester.

Gage A Senator Copic-Gage in general has hired a new complex director. Fire alarms went

off at 3:00 in the morning, also a student was stuck in the elevator. Today furniture was brought

in for students to see for renovation of Gage. I like what we have. I would like to say something

about what the previous speaker said. Many students do not get the information that we get here.

I did have a student blast me about the resolution on war in Iraq. It is hard when people don’t have all the information. I attended Martin Luther King III-it was educational and inspirational. It was about

values of our society. International Festival is April 24. If you would like to help, that would be great.

Senator Penugonda-Do you know how much they are planning on spending to get the new furniture

in Gage?

Senator Copic-They have a budget limit. Right now it is only Gage B that is being renovated.

Senator Penugonda-They are spending approximately $1500 per room.

Senator Braam-Do you think you have done everything you could to inform students?

Senator Copic-No, I do not, I think I can do a lot more.

Science Engineering & Technology Senator Garrity-I am glad a previous speaker brought up

things about student fees. I will talk about fees etc. in two weeks. SAC meets at 11:00 in

Conference Room, anyone can come. If you hear concerns, have them email me. We want to

hear concerns from students. Listen to all students’ opinions, same with calling the question

We need to hear what everyone has to say. I see my role as representing students-I am not the Reporter, but I can talk to people in my classes. I can tell people if I think it is good to raise fees or not. This semester I have found my classes to be very valuable. At MSU basketball all games have had record attendances, there are 3 games left. I am going to Mexico for Spring break. Guadalajara is

very expensive. I am working on my job search-if you are graduating you should be doing that now. I am using networking, but it is really hard. The CDC is doing a really good thing. They help me find jobs and Pam, the assistant director, emails them to me. I am the Events Management Coordinator for my RPLS class. We are doing In-line skating to benefit YMCA and Lake Crystal Rec Center. We also trying to get a sponsor to purchase furniture for the dorm rooms that we show on tours.

Went to see M Big Fat Greek Wedding –it was packed, there were people standing. Asst. Director

Weisblatt said last week they had 1300 people attend. This shows that the money they are getting is sufficient. I highly recommend the Vagina Monologue on Friday. It is an empowering thing, it

is an awareness thing.

Senator Penugonda-Is there special concerns that SLD&SL is not spending money wisely?

Senator Garrity-I am always concerned about spending by any department.

Senator Handwerk-Did you know Frost Days has been cancelled this year because of lack of funds?

Senator Garrity-I have heard it might be limited, but it was in their budget.

Senator Penugonda-Movies and certain events may not be the best way to spend money, how can students get the feel of campus life if there were not events like this, and did you check and see if

they count students, they are understaffed.

Senator Garrity-They have work study because they are understaffed. Fees are like taxes-I am for having programs. It is nice to have them, to provide opportunities, yet many students are here just going to class. I just think we should b responsible and have a good use of money.

Senator Braam-Clarity-do you think the committee is looking at increases?

Senator Garrity-Committee is very opposed to increases. Mike Hodapp, Assistant Director of Student Union and the advisor for SAC, is telling directors to be happy about what they got last year; we are trying to spend money that is beneficial to all students. SAC is very careful that spending is justified.

Senator Penugonda-Are you aware that there are not many students involved in the decision making?

Senator Garrity-Yes, nine people are making recommendations for over a 3 million dollar budget.

Senator Handwerk-What is your favorite color?

Senator Garrity-Blue.

Speaker Raza-Motion before me.

R#02.05.03A Senator Gaffer/Senator Boyce

Move to start a MSSA Budget Committee as outlined in Article 5 Section 10 of the MSSA Constitutional Bylaws.

Speaker-Motion ruled out of order, committee does exist.

Senator Gaffer-Does it have people appointed to it?

Speaker-It does exist, but does not have people appointed to it.

R#02.05.03B-Senator Gaffer/Senator Boyce

Move to recommend to MSU President Dr. Richard Davenport to cancel classes on February 12 between 10:00 and 5:00 to go to Lobby Day at the State Capitol.

Senator Gaffer-Wishful thinking and hard to enforce but we need to get students there.

Senator Boyce-What a great way to get people there.

Senator Radtke-Not a realistic goal. Education first, canceling classes to get people there,


Senator Copic-Interesting motion-but maybe President Davenport could just encourage

faculty to let students go.

Amended Motion Senator Gaffer/Senator Agarwal

Move to recommend to MSU President Dr. Richard Davenport to strongly encourage faculty to release students from classes on February 12 between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. to go to Lobby Day at the State Capitol.

Vice President Raza-Darrel talked to Vice President Boubel and asked here to talk to the Deans and have them talk to faculty, we have not heard back from her.

Friendly amendment passes

Senator Radtke-I have yet to find any professor that would prevent students from going to Lobby Day. I don’t think we need a motion to do this.

Senator Gaffer-It was my intent because of lack of response from the Vice President.

Senator Decker-How would this be enforced?

Senator Garrity-I oppose this, we are doing what we can.

Senator Casper-Students can skip-but many students can not skip, if they did not have classes

they might be convinced to attend lobby day.

Senator Boyce-I support this, because I can not miss my classes.

Senator Braam-Are we asking President Davenport to cancel classes or encourage instructors to let us go?

Senator Copic-I have exams that day-many instructors have things planned.

Senator Read-I am half in favor of this, but it came too late, I think the President may

not approve this but it would send a message to him and how valuable Lobby Day is.

Senator Strangl-Some classes can not be missed like some classes in the College of Business.

Vice President Raza-The professors I talked to will help accommodate if you tell them how

important it is.

Motion 9-9-2 abstentions, fails


Senator Decker-Buy something at the Vagina Monologue

Senator Braam-YMCA fundraiser Krispy Kremes

Senator Boyd-Being Speaker is not an easy job, thank you for doing a good job.

Vice President Raza-Thank you, and the role of the Speaker is to not have an opinion.

Martin Luther King III was amazing-it was packed. I did not think that a son of a great

man could speak that well. My goal for life-referring to a statement from Dr. King, “Be ashamed to die until you achieve victory for humanity.”

Cricket-Australians, African, Pakistan finals will be shown in TV lounge-during next month you can watch Cricket if you are not afraid of brown people.

Senator Handwerk-Free pool downstairs-9-11 p.m.

Roll Call

Senators Present Mary Scheider, Joseph Finn, Faraz Khan, Rich Stangl, Jeremy Stangl, Rajendra Penugonda, Jessica Boyd, Katie Garrity, Andy Braam, Alex Boyce, Rhys Gaffer, Kail Decker, Anand Agarwal, Irfan Bangash, Celeste Hollerud, Thomas Handwerk, Ian Radtke, Jayson Read, Megan Brandt

Senators Absent

Katie Hjulberg, Gordana Copic, Rebecca Pollack

Executive Staff Present

President Joe Muggli, Vice President Raza

Adjournment 6:19 P.M.