UGS passes resolution supporting student-athletes

Jan. 31, 2024, 1:48 a.m.

After four weeks of discussion, the Undergraduate Senate (UGS) unanimously passed the Joint Resolution on Support for Student-Athletes.

The bill intends to aid student-athletes during the integration process into the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), which is projected to increase travel time in student-athletes’ busy schedules. UGS co-chair Diego Kagurabadza ’25 highlighted the bill’s intention to have the University reassess their current student-athlete accommodations in light of the switch to the ACC. The bill also suggests that the University implement priority course enrollment for student-athletes.

“Student-athletes make up about 12% of the undergraduate population […] so we should obviously take these concerns very seriously,” Kagurabadza said.

The bill was passed by the Graduate Student Council (GSC) earlier on Tuesday. According to Kagurabadza, the main issue that was raised in the bill’s drafting was a lack of specificity in the proposal. Kagurabdza explained that the vagueness was intentional. 

“I think there should be room for quite some movement within these proposals because Stanford as an institution will push back and have its own idea about what’s necessary. And, I think that we need to be reasonable in our proposals,” Kagurabadza said.

Faculty Senate representative Divya Ganesan ’25 and senator Carmen Kang ’26 shared a new initiative that aims to give students discounts at local stores and restaurants. So far, the team has reached out to Verve, Teaspoon and Coconuts. While formal deals are not yet complete, Ganesan and Kang have made progress, Kang said.

“I met with the […] general manager of [Coconuts] and he was very positive about providing a student discount,” Kang said. During their conversation, Kang and Coconuts’ general manager discussed the possibility of a 15% discount for students.

Kang is also meeting with Assistant Vice Provost of Residential and Dining Enterprises Imogen Hinds this week to introduce a number of initiatives, including one for more late night food options on campus.

The Senate also discussed Full Moon on the Quad (FMOTQ), a Stanford tradition that typically occurs during the first full moon of winter quarter. In last week’s ASSU student newsletter, the ASSU announced that FMOTQ will be back this quarter after years of hiatus, but not in the week when it typically occurs. ASSU Executive President Sophia Danielpour ’24 explained to the Senate that this delay occurred because they were not able to book a space in time for the first full moon of the quarter. 

ASSU is also attempting to revive Flix, an old Stanford tradition of screening weekly free movies for students.

“It’s very complicated right now because Stanford has changed and things are super expensive to rent on campus, which is very stressful,” Danielpour said. Danielpour is working to bring back Flix at a lower cost, potentially by investing in “some more permanent features” in order to minimize rent costs, she said.

Senator Ivy Chen ’26 announced that she will be meeting with the 5SURE team tomorrow in order to check in with them on the expansion of the 5SURE program, namely through the introduction of an additional vehicle to decrease wait time. 

“It’s ridiculous how long these wait times are,” Chen said. Students have reported hour-long wait times in the past.

The Senate also spent time discussing the implementation of the bill to Establish Standing Ex-Officio Positions. This would create a standing position in UGS for underrepresented demographics so senators have reliable representatives to reach out to whenever they are making policy decisions involving those communities. There was some debate over which demographics should be awarded these “ex-officio” positions; currently, the bill includes transfer students, international students and student-athletes.

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