Student Government Meeting Recap Oct. 25

By Rosalie Sapperstein | Staff Writer

4 mins read
Photo courtesy of @DrewStuGov on Twitter

President Ashley Kibel (‘25) let Senate members know that she had spoken with Vice President Frank Merckx, who had mentioned that he needed Student Representatives to assume future roles to manage laundry concerns through Auxiliary Services. There are already liaisons that work with Auxiliary Services within the Senate, but Kibel welcomed involvement from volunteers who could voice opinions on maintenance of the laundry machines.

In anticipation of the renewal or readjustment of the current dining service contract in spring 2024, Merckx is working with volunteers on the Senate to go to other school’s dining halls and take note of the different ways they operate their dining services. 

The Senate will also be actively approaching the policies on the campus bulletin boards, mentioning the encouragement from Drew’s students on revamping the presence and prevalence of bulletin boards. Specifically, Kibel has received support for the idea of putting up a new bulletin board, especially in front of the Ehinger Center or Brothers College. Kibel said that a new bulletin board “enhances the aesthetics and the culture of the campus, which is always an important aspect of student government and administration.”

There was another hearing in Morris County to discuss the plan of action for Drew’s “Save the Drew Forest” campaign. Kibel explained her opinion on the importance of keeping up with any news about The Forest, emphasizing the power of student voices and the interest Morristown has shown in purchasing the forest.

During the Student Concerns and Compliments portion of the meeting, Vice President Jocelyn Freeman (‘25) shared student submissions about health and safety in Haselton Hall on the agenda prior to the meeting. There has been an increase in students contracting ringworm, reportedly from the residence hall’s showers, and Merckx advised affected students to reach out to Health Services. Freeman has already done this and according to her, Facilities and Residence Life have said they have been in communication with Administration about this issue. 

The Senate strongly encouraged students to document the issues threatening their health at Drew through photos and emails. These can then be used as evidence later to prompt action from Drew to confront these health hazards. Photos can be uploaded here.

Senator Arya Patel (‘27) brought up issues relating to Senator Juanita Navas Espinal’s (‘26) project to distribute tampons and sanitary napkins on campus. Patel also expressed the common issue of students being unaware that Health Services supplies these items for free, creating a preventable boundary to access. Related to the project, Senator Kamila Polanco (‘27) asked Navas Espinal if she would ever consider working with the Drew Food Pantry, which Polanco said receives donations of menstrual products. Navas Espinal was receptive to this and said she would consider partnering with the pantry in the future. Adding on to that, Senator Sasha Magnabousco (‘24) reported that at a Drew Environmental Action League meeting she had attended, Alyssa Sileo (C ’21), Community Engagement Coordinator at Drew University Center for Civic Engagement, informed attendees that they received a surplus amount of feminine products. Magnabousco said she would reach out to Sileo to see if a collaboration would be possible. 

Despite President Hilary Link’s plans to attend previous meetings, the Oct. 25 Senate Meeting was the first with Link in attendance.

Rosie Sapperstein is a senior majoring in English with a concentration in literature and minoring in media and communications.

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