AAS Senate Meeting Minutes

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					4/2/12, 8:30 PM

                      Association of Amherst Students

     AAS Senate Meeting Minutes
     Date: 4/2/12
     Meeting Begins: 8:30 PM
     I. Attendance (George Tepe ‘14 in Nathan Nash ‘12’s absence)
     II. Call to Order (George Tepe ‘14 in Geoff Ainslie ‘12’s absence)

     III. BC Recs (Diwa Cody ‘14)
     Adam Gerchick ‘13: Motion to separate senior sweatshirts to
       separate out from the BC recs.
     Peter Smith ‘14: I would like my band, Black Nash, to come to
       Amherst to play a show. I don’t think we get enough student
       groups playing here. 4 players in the band and I’m the singer.
       Asking for $2500, $500 for each person.
     Noah Gordon ‘14: Secured a venue?
     Smith: Nothing nailed down yet. Talked to a couple bands willing to
       lend us equipment. Someone suggested Marsh or Garman.
     Diwa: This is an unusual request in the sense that you are coming to
       us and asking us to pay you, which I personally think is a little
       weird. Other groups who’ve come to the BC asking if they could
       receive money themselves, we’ve said no. I don’t see why you
       came to Senate and not to the budgetary committee, since you
       don’t really have an idea of the event and you attempted to entirely
       circumnavigate the budgetary process in order to get money. I
       would feel more comfortable if you went away and developed a
       proposal. The way we fund events is we ask that student groups
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                       Association of Amherst Students

         know what the event will be and where it will be. Even if we were
         going to give you money today, we wouldn’t be able to give you all
         the $2500.
     Smith: I’m not asking you to pay me. My band has five people and
        they are working professionally in New York. These are serious
        musicians. I’ve never dealt with the AAS before and I did not intend
        on making procedural mistakes. I didn’t mean any disrespect.
     George: Would you be willing to go to the BC and go through the
     formal process?

     Smith: Absolutely. Diwa then proceeds to tell him that BC meetson
     Wednesday nights at 9:30 PM. Peter is to fill out a discretionary fund
     Amani Ahmed ‘15: I think Peter was simply confused. I would advise
       you to figure out what the $2500 is specifically for. I encourage you
       to come to the BC meeting. Propose a date and a venue.
     Matt Aizpuru ‘12: Look at hotel room pricing, train tickets, etc.

     (Social Council Rep.) Adriana: We requested $550. Idea is to
        promote cohesion. It’s a tradition that freshmen look forward to
        having. We don’t have a large enough budget to fund the
        sweatshirts to have them be free for all seniors.

     Diwa: We funded sweatshirts last year. If we were to not fund this, it
     would be like saying that the class of 2011 was special and no one
     else is.
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                       Association of Amherst Students

     Jess Sidhu ‘14: We should fund with the stipulation that it’s not our
     job to fund out of discretionary. We either need to make the budget
     bigger at the beginning of the year or have SoCo be more frugal so
     they can fund the sweatshirts.

     Chris Friend ‘14: A continual funding of this out of discretionary is
     simply bad policy.

     Diwa: If we could increase the budget, we could use the rollover to
     fund in the future.

     Jess: With the stipulation that we won’t fund it in the future?

     Motion to fund the $5,050 for sweatshirts.


     Dvij Bajpai ’15 / Jeffrey Feldman ‘15 Senate Project Funding Disc.

     Jeff Feldman:

     Current system of practice rooms in basement of James and Stearns:
     one electric keyboard and low-quality keyboards. Dean of Student
     Activities does give out multiple keys but only some students take
     advantage of this. Most obvious solution: Change all locks to one lock
     that can be accessed by any key. This would not work because it
     would be a huge waste of time and money because if the key is lost,
     every lock would have to be replaced.
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                       Association of Amherst Students

     Installation of card readers (same ones to get into dorm). If a student
     loses his/her card, that student can be taken off of the list of students
     at Keefe. The system will keep track of who’s in the room and who
     may damage the space. A donation from an alumnus has already
     been secured for equipment. $12,500 is the total cost. The
     Administration has not offered anything.

     The students who already use a practice room will use previously
     unused space.
     Students who don’t currently use the rooms will get more utility out of

     Professor David Schneider: No news to me. I’ve worked on those
     practice rooms even before they existed. I was horrified to see that
     what they meant by practice rooms were just empty classrooms. I
     drove to West Hartford and bought those pianos myself with the help
     of some acapella students. We got the cheapest pianos we could for
     about $3000. They key swipe solution is a great solution. This would
     be a very powerful expression of value. I would try to parlay this in
     conversations with the Administration and perhaps they can meet you
     halfway. I’ve had conversations with the Dean of Students Office. It’s
     hard to get the funding. But you could strategize, alert President
     Martin, and ask the Administration what they can do to help.

     Jeff: The cost for the installation of the card-reader systems, which is
     between $10,000 and $12,500.

     Josh Mayer ‘13: Thank you for coming. We should value music more.
     You mentioned you spoke with Dean Fatemi about changing locks if
     people lose locks.
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                       Association of Amherst Students

     Dvij: For Practice rooms in James and Stearns, keys are handed out
     way more freely.

     Benyam Ashenafi: Have you considered on installing the system on
     fewer rooms? Make it a sort of pilot project?

     Jeff: That wouldn’t accomplish some of the goals. I can’t use the
     same room as someone else. It doesn’t utilize the space of five rooms
     most efficiently.

     Matt Aizpuru: How much does it cost to replace a whole set of locks?

     Dvij: About $100 a lock. But it’s a huge waste of time. The card
     reader system keeps a log of students who enter the room to find out
     who’s been damaging rooms. This is not going to directly improve the
     culture of music on campus, but it will enable a future value of music.

     Diwa: I’m the campus center manager. We sign out keys a lot for
     many student groups. Low-tech key signing out process. The campus
     center could absorb the additional responsibility. We could then use
     AAS funds to fund equipment for the rooms instead of expensive card

     Alex Stein ‘13: Maintenance costs?

     Dvij: Three or four swiping systems get damaged. Small percentage
     of doors that get damaged and need repair. We’d hope to install the
     system over the summer. It’s probably going to be around $1000 for
     maintenance, whenever they get spoiled.

     Jeff: Probability of them getting damaged is extremely low, especially
     because they’re underground.
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                        Association of Amherst Students


     MRC hosts JAMBOREE every year. This year, we had the idea to get
     more of a phenomenon than a giveaway going. Many people speak of
     the Amherst Awkward and the difficulty of talking to each other. A shirt
     like this with a “let’s talk” in the front will inspire the campus
     community. We’re giving the money to Dean Fatemi. We’re
     requesting $3000 for about 600 shirts.

     Alex Hurst ‘12: This is a giveaway. I’m skeptical at how much this is
     going to be effective. Are people really going to go up to random
     people they don’t know just because someone’s wearing a teacher?

     Dvij: Maybe I’m naive, but I think it will make people acknowledge
     that they are comfortable talking to each other. When you’re wearing
     the shirt, you need to make more of an effort to talking to different
     people. It’s a direct investment for the betterment of the community.

     Jeff: This would be used in conjunction with different events on

     Adam Gerchick: Almost every giveaway has a purpose behind it. I
     understand the sentiment behind it, but I don’t think this investment
     will have significant returns. I don’t think it will touch multicultural

     Peter Crane ‘15: I’d like to know why we don’t fund giveaways.

     Noah: I want to suggest a more cost-effective trial. Try attaching
     signs or pins to people’s shirts and figure out if this is a valuable
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                       Association of Amherst Students

     Diwa: I’m shocked that we are still debating on funding this. If you
     fund t-shirts for one student group, you cannot deny others.

     Motion not passed.

     Matt Echelman ‘14: CCC. Front- Dodgeball: only the strong will
     survive. Back- But real strength will come from respecting money.
     Multiple teams, 6 balls per game. Buy four sets of cushy dodgeballs.
     Requesting $270 for four sets. Assuming 6-8 people on a team. After
     tournaments, we’ll put the balls in storage.

     Motion to fund.

     Boxes (Romen)
     Romen: We have plenty of time for a senator to pick up the program
       of offering boxes to students at move-out time.

     IV. Reports
     A. Committee Reports

     Matt DeButts ’14: Committee of Educational Policy: Dept. is
     asking for more professors.

     Peter Crane: Program Board met. We’re working on making the
     process of choosing an artist for
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                      Association of Amherst Students

     Noah: Student Computing Committee met. We spoke to Scott
     Hamilton in the IT. The Search function is pretty bad on the Amherst
     website. If they’re having trouble, try logging out (too much
     information factored into search results when logged in) or searching
     on Google. Digital signage will soon be coming to Frost.

     John Yarchoan ’13: Late-Night dining: Wednesday this week, April
     17th, 24th. Food at Val from 10 PM to 12 AM.

     Christina Won ’15: IT finally has a CIO: Gale Barton. Online tuition
     payment and graphic design lab (poster ideas).

     Chris Friend: Traditions committee met. We finally have a history
     week and it will most likely work out well.
     B. General Announcements

     Alex Stein ‘13: Testing version of scrutiny ready in about two weeks.

     Wilfredo Gomez ‘15: LOGIC is coming this Friday along with DJ
     Wells, an alumnus of Amherst. Please accept invites on Facebook.
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                       Association of Amherst Students

     C. Officer Reports
     Distinguished Teacher Award Bylaw (Josh Mayer)
     Founded in 2000 by the Student Government Association and
       continued by the AAS until about 2009. The thought it to bring it
       back. There’s a plaque outside Dean Fatemi’s office where we put
       the professor’s name.

     Each class will bring up to two nominees to the Senate meeting
     before the April Senate elections. The Senate will vote for nominees
     by secret ballot. This is how it was done when it was originally
     Benyam: What is the faculty’s attitude toward this award?
     Josh: Can’t tell you. But it appears on their faculty pages online.

     Peter Crane: How can we get a greater student body input?
     Josh: We want to avoid making this a popularity contest, which could
     arise if we put this out to the student body as a whole.
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                      Association of Amherst Students

     Matt DeButts: Have you considered accepting nominations from the
       student body?
     Josh Mayer: The idea originally was that was specifically an award
       from the Senate.
     Approve Minutes, 3-19-12 (Geoff)
         Minutes approved.
     New Business
     Adjournment: 9:47 PM

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