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December 6, 2022

SGA discusses Office of Sustainability updates and questions for President Daniels

By CIARAN J. COLE | February 19, 2022

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FILE PHOTO

SGA members present brought up increasing mental health resources as something to bring up with University President Ronald J. Daniels. 

The Student Government Association (SGA) assembled on Feb. 15 to review the junior class Valentine’s Day event, the participation in the Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APAIVote) organization, its annual event with University President Ronald J. Daniels, the First-Year Class Council Twosday funding expansion and Office of Sustainability updates.

Office of Sustainability updates

Following a presentation, Director of Sustainability Julian Goresko took questions and elaborated on developments of the University’s Sustainability Plan.

  • Regarding recent developments since the 2019 Solar Agreement by the University to meet community waste and climate goals, Goresko emphasized that “large anchor institutions like Johns Hopkins have a large role to play.”
  • Workshops starting March 10 for students and the public will cover justice and equity, academic research opportunities and other topics over the next few months. By 2023, the Office of Sustainability aims to plan future town halls and additional surveys.
  • Freshman Class Senator Kya Nicholson and Junior Class Senator Obi Onyinanya raised concerns regarding the University’s current waste incineration in Westport, a predominantly Black neighborhood.
  • Alternative proposals to reduce waste at Westport site, such as creating the University’s own compost facility, are welcomed by the Office of Sustainability. “There is no opposition,” Goresko said. “Just the University would have to develop one since none exist.”
  • Upon request of Senior Class Senator Subha Bhatta to discuss present University projects where sustainability measures are being incorporated, Goresko cited recent efforts to minimize construction debris from the ongoing Mattin Center demolition.

President Daniels event

The SGA held a round-robin discussion of topics to consider for its annual gathering with President Daniels, which will be held on April 14. The event will consist of SGA members speaking with President Daniels and Provost Sunil Kumar about ideas for improving campus. 

  • Freshman Class Senator Jean Zhou’s suggestion to bring up campus mental health resources was repeated by several SGA representatives. “Hopkins does not have its own recruited consultants for mental health, as those fall under outside services,” Zhou said.
  • Issues such as international student safety concerns, more support for students with disabilities on campus and opposition to the Johns Hopkins Police Department were also brought up by several class senators.

Junior class Valentines Day event evaluation

Junior Class President Talia Shadroui analyzed participation in this year's telegram exchange, which concluded on Feb 14.

  • Purchases of 90 telegrams marked a decrease in totals from prior years.
  • Telegram advertisements were tagged onto the spring semester welcome-back email, which Shadroui said “made the event not as successful last year since it didn’t have a whole email dedicated to the event.”

APIAVote

Sophomore Class President Kobi Khong motioned for a vote to approve University ambassadorship for the APIAVote organization.

  • Khong called for goals of increasing civic engagement among Asian Pacific Islanders, noting that Hopkins was partnered with APIAVote back in 2017.
  • The motion passed.

First-Year Class Council Fresh Food Café Twosday funding amendment

Freshman Class President Ryan Chou presented a funding bill to procure more prizes for the regularly held trivia and games, with the stipulation of opening the freshman event to all classes.

  • Additional expenditures of $425 for plushies and wallets were proposed to be handed out to winners at event festivities.
  • The bill passed unanimously.
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