ASSU Undergraduate Senate approves Alternative Review Process

Feb. 5, 2013, 11:19 p.m.

The ASSU Undergraduate Senate unanimously approved the Alternative Review Process (ARP) — a revised judicial procedure for cases involving sexual assault, relationship violence, sexual harassment and stalking — at its Feb. 5 meeting.

If the Graduate Student Council (GSC) approves the ARP today, it will proceed to the Faculty Senate for a vote at its March meeting.

The ARP has been one of the defining issues of this year’s Senate. Senate Chair Branden Crouch ’14 said that he was extremely pleased with the fact that the Senate was able to come to a consensus and approve the ARP.

“It’s been a really great move on our part to tackle this in the short amount of time that we’ve had and really make sure the student body was informed about it through all of our public events,” Crouch said.

Earlier in the meeting, ASSU Assistant Financial Manager Stephen Trusheim ’13 told the Senate that the Board of Directors of Stanford Student Enterprises (SSE) had approved the creation of a Financial Manager Advisory Committee.

According to Trusheim, this committee will be responsible for bringing together the legislative and executive bodies of the ASSU, the SSE and the financial manager.

“There are actually specific challenges and specific ways to improve the services we offer students, and we are really excited that we are creating a group in order to do this,” Trusheim said.

Trusheim also asked senators to participate in what he called “the most important thing we could ever do for this entire organization” — creating a multi-year plan for the ASSU.

“We expect that the political bodies have priorities that are going to take more than one year to accomplish,” Trusheim said. “We really want to make sure we are passing those things down both for posterity and so that next year’s Senate and Execs and GSC can think about what they want to do to continue those priorities.”

Trusheim encouraged the Senate to compile lists of the major issues they have been working on this year to pass on to future senators for further development.

“If you have a priority and you have been working on it, write a summary of what you did, what you accomplished, what the major problems are and what our three-year goal is for that initiative,” Trusheim said. “We really hope that this will help the ASSU become a vision-driven, mission-driven organization that has better multi-year continuity.”

The Senate also discussed several student life issues, including creating an online reservation system for music groups to book time in the new Stern practice room and eliminating the preliminary phone evaluation required to book an in-person appointment with Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).

Student Life Committee Chair Viraj Bindra ’15 told senators that he was looking into Stanford’s policy regarding food trucks on campus after hearing that the vendor Net Appetit is no longer allowed to operate on campus due to the University’s revised food truck policy. Bindra said that he is talking with Chon Vo, who operates the Net Appetit truck, as well as ASSU President Robbie Zimbroff ’12 M.A. ’13 and Vice President William Wagstaff ’12 M.A. ’13, and will update senators as the situation develops.

During the funding portion of the meeting, the Senate approved the approximately $70,000 in grant proposals recommended by the Appropriations Committee for general fees groups hosting spring quarter events.
Senators discussed the grant program with Director of Student Activities and Leadership Nanci Howe, who asked whether or not the Appropriations Committee had any ideas on how the program could be improved in the future.

Although Appropriations Committee Deputy Chair Kimberly Bacon ’15 mentioned the possibility of creating a grant for philanthropic events in the future, senators had few other suggestions for improving the selection process.

“It is remarkable how many applicants there were and how much was done in that short period of time,” said Appropriations Committee Deputy Chair Christos Haveles ’15. “Our hope for future years is that if this was planned with more time in advance, this would turn out even better.”

After the meeting, Crouch confirmed that former senator Jack Weller ’15 is taking a leave of absence from the Senate.

“He’s taking a leave of absence, [and] we’re just really trying to protect his privacy,” Crouch said. “At this time, we’re not sure what’s going on. I don’t think he’s going to be expelled from the Senate, but I don’t know the situation.”

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