Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
June 18, 2024

SGA makes amendments to Constitution and bylaws

By ARUSA MALIK | April 13, 2023

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STEVEN SIMPSON / PHOTO EDITOR

SGA voted not to pass the Fiji Islander Funding Bill due to financial constraints.

The Student Government Association (SGA) held its weekly general body meeting on April 11 to discuss funding for a Blue Jays and Poets Open Mic Night, the Fiji Islander Funding Bill, constitutional and bylaws amendments, the Container Funding Bill and the SGA Inauguration Funding Bill. The Financial Aid Office also gave a presentation to SGA.

Financial Aid presentation

Quinton Taylor, director of student financial services and scholarships, spoke to SGA on behalf of the University’s Student Financial Support Office. The presentation described how students can benefit from their services. 

  • Taylor explained the difference between Student Financial Support and Student Enrollment and Account Management (SEAM), common questions on financial aid and ways SGA can support students.
  • The services of the Financial Aid Office include awarding aid, advising students in financing their education and providing financial literacy programs and collaborative programs.
  • Taylor noted that students often do not know where to ask questions related to financial aid. He clarified that in-depth questions should be addressed to the Office of Student Financial Support and that SEAM is in charge of general questions.
  • Sophomore Class Senator Jackson Morris raised a question regarding sharing information about anonymous financial aid cases on the Financial Aid Office website. Taylor responded that they are in the working stages of this project.
  • Freshman Class Senator Alisa Fedotova inquired if electronic resources, such as class software, are included in financial aid for books and supplies. Taylor confirmed that they are.
  • Treasurer Kya Nicholson asked if summer grants impact scholarships. Taylor detailed that when students receive an experiential learning grant, they are enrolled in a one-credit course that creates a cost of attendance for the grant to be applied, making it so financial aid in the fall and spring are not impacted.

Blue Jays and Poets Open Mic Night presentation and bill

President and Co-founder of Blue Jays and Poets Yasmine Bolden proposed an idea for an Open Mic Night. She delivered a presentation that outlined the group’s financial needs from SGA. Sophomore Class Senator Brandon Benjamin introduced a bill funding the Blue Jays and Poets Open Mic Night.

  • Blue Jays and Poets requested a poster stand to be reused every year, customized stickers and blank t-shirts for attendees and utensils for snacks at the event.
  • The bill passed unanimously. 

Fiji Islander Funding Bill

Senior Class President Sophie Liu introduced a funding bill for the Gamma Delta (Fiji) Fraternity for their annual Fiji Islander event. The bill was tabled at last week’s SGA meeting.

  • The SGA budget is currently below the amount requested by Fiji. Liu proposed having the classes support the funding initiative.
  • Junior Class Senator Shalala Leny asked if it is possible to reduce the amount requested in the funding bill.
  • In response, Liu discussed scrapping the bill to fund other initiatives. “We're tight on budget, so I'm really open to hearing anyone's objections and how we can best utilize our funds otherwise,” she said.
  • The bill did not pass, with 65% voting against and 35% for Fiji’s request.

Constitutional amendments 

Sophomore Class President Ryan Chou and Morris introduced a bill amending the current SGA Constitution to ease caucus requirements, as discussed in a previous SGA meeting. 

  • The bill passed unanimously.

Vacancies Bylaws amendment

Morris presented an amendment to the bylaws to rename the class programming councils to chair and treasurer. The amendments also include an extension section that defines how SGA should proceed when the University is not in session. 

  • The bill passed unanimously.

Container Funding Bill

Dobbs introduced a funding bill that would purchase 16 large clear containers to organize the SGA closet. 

  • Dobbs amended the bill to include a label maker and add an additional set of bins.
  • The bill passed unanimously.

SGA Inauguration Funding Bill

Liu presented the SGA Inauguration Funding Bill to cover the expenses associated with holding an inauguration for the new SGA administration. 

  • Chou asked about the intended audience of the event. According to Liu, the event will host incoming SGA and outgoing SGA. 
  • The Chief Justice will swear in the new Executive Board, the advisors will address SGA and President Breanna Soldatelli will share accomplishments of the year.
  • The bill passed unanimously.

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