General assembly report 10/4/23

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The recent Student Government Association (SGA) General Assembly meeting on Oct. 4 consisted of numerous funding requests, a club approval and a discussion regarding the abstention policy for voting.

At first during the constituency comments, Editor-in-Chief of The Muhlenberg Weekly, Katherine Conlon ‘24, brought up budget concerns and a request for an additional $1,000 to cover printing costs. Conlon justified this cost and asserted that the Weekly deserves the full funding they requested because of their past support for SGA. Conlon noted “I ended up meeting with members of SGA personally. While we did not get the extra funding that we requested, they assured me that many clubs are going through similar experiences. Because there are less students enrolling, funds coming from the student activities fee have gone down. I would advocate for increasing this fee, even if it’s just by a few dollars.”

The Muhlenberg Theatre Association (MTA) was the first organization to formally request funds. Representatives requested additional funding support for their annual Red Door Play Festival, which boasts free admission for all students. They expressed the importance of the event in involving students in the association and the theater community in general. The request was approved.

The second funding request was made by the DiscipleMakers Christian Fellowship (DCF). Representatives requested these funds for a weekend trip to a fellowship conference. This experience would help to deepen the bonds between the Muhlenberg students and form connections with the other Pennsylvania college fellowships in attendance. The conference is open to all students regardless of personal faith. The request was approved.

The final funding request of the evening was by a representative from the Muhlenberg Athletic Leadership Team (MALT). The request was for funding more custom-designed t-shirts to be given out to the student body at sporting events due to the high demand in the past. The request was approved.

There was one club approval during the general assembly meeting, that being the Planned Parenthood club. The representatives explained that the club would revolve around the volunteer escort program. This program involves students escorting individuals in and out of Planned Parenthood locations to ensure their safety. The club already has 12 trained members and over 100 students on the emailing list. The club was approved.

The evening concluded with a discussion about the abstention policy for voting in SGA meetings. In particular, there was a previous vote that had a large number of abstentions and thus raised some questions about the policy. SGA members discussed the pressures from the student audience during this specific vote and how a lack of information on the topic can sway votes. President Jake Forstein ‘24 mentioned the possibility of changing the seating arrangements for the student audience for future meetings. Forstein also touched on postponing certain votes if representatives still feel uneducated about the topic rather than relying on abstentions to make decisions. 


Additional reporting by Leila Farzin ‘27.

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