General Body Meeting

11/18/18

9:00 PM Benjamin Franklin Room, Houston Hall

  1. Roll Call
  2. Open Forum
  3. Reports
  1. President’s Report
  1. AVEN Presentation
  2. Upcoming Administrator Meetings
  1. Vice President’s Report
  1. UA Steering Updates
  1. UA Report
  1. Semester Schedule
  2. UA Apparel
  3. Holiday Party
  4. Membership Update
  5. UA Spotlights
  6. Member of the Week
  1. Treasurer’s Report
  1. Emergency Contingency Request- La Unidad Latina Pa’lante Banquet
  1. Secretary’s Report
  1. Penn Labs
  2. Airport Shuttles
  1. Discussion Papers
  1. Student and Campus Life
  1. Pennvolvement and Civic Engagement
  1. Project Highlights
  1. Academic Initiatives
  1. Pre-Major Advising Reform
  1. Equity and Inclusion
  1. Water Fountains in the Quad
  1. Student and Campus Life
  1. On-campus Recruiting Resources and Advocacy
  1. External Seats
  1. UC Committee on Campus and Community Life
  2. Trustee Committee on Academic Policy
  1. Communications

Reports


President’s Report

  1. AVEN Presentation
  1. Students Desteni Walker and Wyatt Perez will give us a 15-minute presentation on how to access resources surrounding violence prevention at Penn.
  1. Upcoming Administrator Meetings
  1. UA Cabinet will be meeting with Vice Provost for University Life, Val Swain-Cade McCoullum on November 28 from 4-5pm. If you have suggested agenda topics, please let me know.

Vice-President’s Report

  1. UA Steering Updates
  1. Due to Thanksgiving Break scheduling, I have cancelled UA Steering on November 20. We will tentatively be having the last Steering meeting of the semester on November 27 in SHDH 1201.

UA Report

  1. Semester Schedule
  1. There are two more committee meetings remaining: the weeks of November 25th and December 2nd.
  2. There is one more GBM remaining on December 2nd at 9 PM in Ben Franklin Room.
  1. UA Apparel
  1. Please be sure to fill out the form for apparel by tonight at 11:59pm. If you have financial concerns, please reach out to Brian.
  1. UA Holiday Party
  1. Before our GBM on December 2nd we will be holding the annual UA Holiday Party. We will also be doing a Gift Exchange, look for information from Arjun soon about this.
  1. Membership Update
  1. Nile Nwogu has been removed from the UA due to attendance issues. He has decided not to contest his removal. He wishes everyone good luck with the session!
  1. UA Spotlights
  1. Mikayla Golub
  1. Replacing the sale of plastic water bottles on campus with boxed water
  1. Carmen Duran
  1. Subsidized Prescription Medication for Highly-Aided Students on PSIP
  1. Regan Mizrahi
  1. Revamping Pre-Freshman Advising
  1. Member of the Week
  1. This week’s member of the week is...

Treasurer’s Report

  1. Emergency Contingency Request: La Unidad Latina Pa’lante Banquet
  1. On Thursday, November 15th, Exec held an emergency contingency vote. Exec voted 5-0-0 to fund La Unidad Latina’s Pa’lante Banquet at $360 for lighting. They needed 8 sets of uplights, each set costing $45. The event is occurring on Sunday, November 18th.
  2. This brings our contingency fund from $15,544 to $15,184.

Secretary’s Report

  1. Penn Labs
  1. We had our last Penn Labs Board meeting for the semester on Friday at 8am. We discussed progress on projects that were approved in the last meeting. We also talked about goals for next semester.
  1. Airport Shuttles
  1. Remember to sign up for shifts! Here are the people who have not yet signed up for a shift or reached out to me:
  1. Ozi
  2. Obed
  3. Tess
  4. Jen A
  5. Priya
  6. Daniel W
  7. Will C
  8. Armaun
  9. Kevin A
  10. Simon C
  11. Robert
  12. Samantha
  13. Ammar
  14. Chase
  15. Mikayla
  16. William W
  1. Show up to your shift on time! Everyone will be shared on an excel sheet containing a list of each passenger on that specific shuttle. It will be the UA member’s job to check off the people as they board the bus to make sure they paid for a ticket. If someone is shows up hoping to buy a ticket, they will be able to go to the website and purchase one if the shuttle is not full.

Discussion Papers


Student and Campus  Life

Pennvolvement and Civic Engagement

Authored by Dante Diggs

 

Background:

This project aims to consolidate all of Penn’s civic engagement opportunities for current and future students at Penn. I met with Victoria Warner, the Chair Internal of SCUE, about this project, and she provided insight on her plans for a civic engagement week targeted to freshmen. While the project was originally intended to redevelop and market Pennvolvement (pennvolvement.com), a malleable database for civic engagement projects, it seemed fitting to create a short-term solution in the form of a list of civic engagement opportunities to coincide with Victoria’s plan for a civic engagement week. Additionally, Glenn Bryan recommended that I attend “First Thursday” to learn more about programs that are working to improve the community.

Moving forward, I plan to continue meeting leaders of civic engagement groups at Penn and establishing the format for the list for next year. I am also planning on reaching out to members of the Civic House and the Netter Center, such as David Grossman.

 

  1. What are some examples of clubs that are civically engaged, either in primary mission or general group work?
  2. For the list of resources:
  1. What are some volunteer organizations and clubs that should be included on the list?
  2. What information about the groups should be included on the list?
  3. How should we format the list of resources (ie. word document, interactive online guide, colorful paper guide, etc)?
  1. What are some other ways that the UA can promote civic engagement with the Philadelphia community?
  2. How can we effectively revamp Pennvolvement in the future so that Penn students will actually use it?


Project Highlights


Academic Initiatives

Pre-Major Advising Reform

Authored by: Ryan Bush and Regan Mizrahi

 

To revamp advising, we will be taking a two-pronged approach: tangible aspects and lobbying aspects. The tangible component would concern adopting the system of “bucketing” for pre-major advisor categorization, as well as promoting the enhanced quality of advisors, rather than quantity. The lobbying component would concern a series of three measures to enhance communication between advisors and students: a mandatory email to advisees the summer before freshman year, a mandatory email to advisees midway through the semester, and a system of oversight for advisors in the case of unavailability during advanced registration periods. Our next step is to speak with the director of academic advising in the College, Dr. Janet Tighe, on how best to streamline the process.

Equity and Inclusion

Water Fountains in the Quad

Authored by: Thomas Cosentino

My goal for this project is to increase access to clean water in the Quad by adding water fountain locations. Currently, only three water fountain locations exist, one in each of the College Houses. After speaking with many students in the Quad, I’ve found that access to these locations is limited and students decide either to buy filters for their tap water or drink directly from the tap. I emailed Paul Forchielli, the Residential Service Administrator, addressing these concerns. I mentioned having water bottle filling stations, or simply having stand-alone fountains without a piping requirement, which was a major concern of past attempts. Paul is currently identifying locations where stations could potentially work, but is not fully on board with the stand-alone fountains. Currently, I am working on a solution to make sure that all floors have readily available clean water access, not only a few floors.

Student and Campus Life

On-Campus Recruitment Resources and Advocacy

Authored by Ryan Bush, Maria Curry, and Michael Krone

On Friday, November 16, we met with Barbara Hewitt, Executive Director of Career Services, and Debra Smiley-Koita, Recruiting Manager, to follow up on the UA resolution passed on November 11 concerning advanced recruiting timelines. We learned that Career Services is in communication with large firms (banks and consulting firms) regarding this issue, and that no interviews will take place in Spring 2019 for summer 2020 internships. We discussed how logistically, it is infeasible to schedule all informational events (e.g., open coffee chats, information presentations, etc.) entirely in the Fall semester. This is because Services does not schedule firms that are in the same industry at the same time. We presented ideas to improve communication and knowledge of the process, such as a peer-to-peer career counseling network for resume help, case preparation, or technical assistance; a streamlined way to opt-in to industry-based listservs; and potential improvements to the Career Services website.


External Seats


UC Committee on Campus and Community Life

Authored by Jess Andrews

 

On Thursday, November 15, the UC Committee on Campus and Community Life (UC CCL) convened to discuss Penn’s relationship to and engagement with the greater Philadelphia community. Glenn Bryan, the Assistant Vice President of Government and Community Affairs, spoke about Penn’s engagement activities with the community surrounding Penn Presbyterian hospital, including Penn’s participation in renovations of Saunders Park (3827 Powelton Ave) and the construction of the radiation/oncology building at Penn Presbyterian. If anyone has any questions, feel free to reach out to me after the meeting.

Trustee Committee on Academic Policy

Authored by: Max Grove

 

The committee met to approve two new degrees: Master’s in Bioinformatics and Master’s in Genetic Counseling. The committee also discussed how to better CURF programming and advertise scholar programs.


Minutes


  1. Roll Call
  1. Destinee and Wyatt- AVEN Reps
  2. Ryan- AM on EI
  3. Tess- AM on AI
  4. John- AM on SCL
  5. Sophie- AM on SCI
  6. Stephen- NEC Liaison
  1. Open Forum
  1. Brian: I definitely want everyone to have a chance to speak and feel like they are able to speak. It was never my intention to limit speaking, but keep in mind what you want to say before you say it.
  2. Kristen: I received a complaint about the fruit in Commons.
  3. Brian: I would suggest reaching out to Maria or Kev.
  1. Reports
  1. President’s Report
  1. AVEN Presentation
  1. Michael: Aven student representatives Desteni Walker and Wyatt Perez will give a 15-minute presentation on accessing resources surrounding violence prevention at Penn.
  1. Upcoming Administrator Meetings
  1. Michael: Cabinet will be meeting with VPUL, Val Swain-Cade McCoullum on November 28 from 4-5pm. If you have suggested agenda topics, please let me know as soon as possible.
  2. Dante: What types of topics might we submit?
  3. Michael: I would send topics surrounding the specific office we are meeting with. For VPUL, I recommend topics surrounding  event registration, thriving at penn initiative, and extracurricular life. I will send the organizational chart for all of the offices under VPUL.
  1. Vice President’s Report
  1. UA Steering Updates
  1. Jordan: I have cancelled UA Steering for this coming Tuesday, November 20 because of low attendance due to Thanksgiving Break. The last Steering meeting of the semester is tentatively scheduled for November 27 in SHDH 1201, so notice the change of date and location.  
  1. UA Report
  1. Semester Schedule
  1. Brian: We don’t have committee this week, which is sad. There are only two more committee meetings and one GBM remaining in in the semester. If you have questions about attendance, please check the sheet and make sure you reach out to Mercedes with concerns.
  1. UA Apparel
  1. Brian: Be sure to fill out the form for apparel by tonight at 11:59pm. It has been sent to me about six times by me, so you definitely have it. If you have financial concerns, please reach out to me. I designed it, so it’s great.
  1. Holiday Party
  1. Arjun: About an hour and half before our last GBM on December 2nd, we will be holding the annual UA Holiday Party. We will also be doing a Gift Exchange, so look for information from me sometime this week.
  2. Quinn: Do we wear normal clothes?
  3. Arjun: Last year, we wore UA gear, but christmas sweaters are looked favorably upon.
  4. Maria: Should we coordinate colors?
  5. Arjun: Also would be looked favorably upon.
  1. Membership Update
  1. Brian: Nile Nwogu has been removed from the UA because of his lack of attendance, and he decided not to contest his removal. He is enjoying his senior year.
  2. Kristen: Will there be a special election?
  3. Brian: Yes, at the beginning of next semester.
  4. Arjun: We appreciate all Nile has done, so make sure to communicate that to him.
  1. UA Spotlights
  1. Brian: This is a new feature of the agenda were I will speak about projects that stuck out to me in the summary report. This week, I chose projects being worked on by Mikayla, Carmen, and Regan. Make sure to update Trello so that you could be spotlighted as well!
  1. Member of the Week
  1. M(s)OWT are Ozi and Tess!
  1. Treasurer’s Report
  1. Emergency Contingency Request- La Unidad Latina Pa’lante Banquet
  1. Natasha: This past Thursday, Exec voted 5-0-0 to fund La Unidad Latina’s Pa’lante Banquet, which brought our contingency fund total from $15,544 to $15,184.
  2. Quinn: With these requests, are we the last option?
  3. Natasha: Yes we are the last resort.
  4. Arjun: Is this event open to the public?
  5. Natasha: Yes.
  6. Kristen: Do these funds have to last us all year?
  7. Natasha: Yes.
  1. Secretary’s Report
  1. Penn Labs
  1. Mercedes: This past Friday was the last Penn Labs board meeting of the semester. We discussed progress on current projects, including functionality updates across Penn Course Search, Review, and Alert, as well as a branding guide which allows all Penn Labs products to have a cohesive design. I will now defer to Penn Labs chairs Dominic and Emily for brief updates and questions.
  2. Emily: There hasn’t been a huge change in Penn Course Review and Alert. A lot of people still don’t know that we are using Penn Course Alert  instead of Notify. Penn Course Search is being rewritten; it looks a lot better with the updated design and is essentially a better version of Penn InTouch.
  3. Dominic: We will also talk about platform. We will be beta testing the implementation of an accounts system through Penn Labs in order to insure a unified experience across all Penn Labs branded resources. We are also working on incorporating a guide for clubs and events through this accounts service. Penn mobile android has also had great improvement this past week. We started working on University Notifications as well where you would be notified when major university events, like advance registration, happen.
  4. Maria: On Penn Course Alert, do you also have to go back in to re-request the course that you were notified for but missed?
  5. Emily: No, that is something we have been working on and have improved since we switched from Notify.
  6. Dom: The email notification system is good, but we are working on the text system.
  7. Max: I would reach out to Wharton Computing to see how they are implementing clubs and events into the new MyWharton system. They would be interested in working with you.
  8. Kristen: The UA and you guys have been working on a club rating system, how do you feel about it and its feasibility?
  9. Dom: It is technically feasible, but I am against rating the groups. I want to frame it as more of a resource of all of the clubs at Penn along with information about them.
  10. John: I am so excited to hear that you are working on this. What steps have been taken?
  11. Dom: We had an opportunity to test our possible program last year with SPEC for spring fling with the account system. We are also using the data from Groups Online @ Penn which we will be working on with Katie.
  12. Ben: Have you guys considered a Google calendar integration?
  13. Emily: That is interesting, but we have not thought about it.
  14. Dominic: In Penn Mobile, there is a button to add to your personal calendar, but we can take the google calendar into consideration as well.
  15. Emily: It should be very feasible.
  16. Chase: Is there anything being done in terms of consolidation and publicity for Penn Course Alert?
  17. Emily: We would like as much publicity for Alert as we can get. In terms of consolidation, we are working on cleaning up old code and making the system less complex overall.
  18. Thomas: Regarding Penn Course Alert, have you thought about telling RAs to push this as a resource for freshmen?
  19. Dom: We actually missed the RA fair this year, but in coming years, we will do it. It is definitely impactful.
  20. Natasha: Is Penn Mobile advertised through NSO?
  21. Emily: It has been mentioned in skits in the past, but not explicitly.
  22. Dominic: We met with NSO coordinators in the past about having Penn Mobile used for NSO events. That's something we are working on with the account system.
  1. Airport Shuttles
  1. Mercedes: So far, we have sold 314 tickets for shuttles, so please continue to advertise! Remember to sign up for shifts or reach out to me tonight if you know you are unable to work one. For logistics, a brief preview is listed, but I will include more detailed instructions in the email with the passenger sheet.
  2. Dante: For everyone working a shift, a sheet containing the list of passengers will be shared with you. You will be responsible for checking off the passengers on the sheet as they enter the shuttle.
  3. Danny: Please be sure to continue advertising as well. As mentioned last time, we would like for you to take out your phones and change your profile frames and like and comment on each other’s posts. It really helps!
  4. Regan: What exactly will we be doing on the shift?
  5. Mercedes: I will be sending out an email with detailed instructions for everyone working a shift.
  6. Danny: Can people pay at the door?
  7. Mercedes: Yes, if there is space available on the shuttle they can go directly to the website and purchase one then.
  8. Chase: Just a reminder to reach out to me if you are able to switch shifts with me!
  9. Jude: Notice everyone in EI has signed up for a shift because we are the best.
  1. Discussion Papers
  1. Student and Campus Life
  1. Pennvolvement and Civic Engagement
  1. Dante: Essentially, This project aims to consolidate all of Penn’s civic engagement opportunities for Penn into one resource. If anyone has any feedback, it would be greatly appreciated. I thought this was a really great idea for engagement. Ideally, the long-term solution would be improving Pennvolvement, and the short-term would be making existing resources known.
  2. Michael: I have been around for the entire life cycle of Pennvolvement. It is a great resource, but getting people involved would be the biggest challenge. Civic house and the Netter Center are great umbrella organizations to speak with.
  3. Jordan: The vast majority of civic engagement groups are within those two umbrella groups. The platform as it currently exists is student run, so it was up to students to populate the pages and keep everything updated. It may be better to give the responsibility of running Pennvolvement to the administrators who work with these groups.
  4. Brian: I am impressed with this project, and the format of the discussion paper. I think one major struggle you will have is continuity of use.
  5. Michael: A short term solution would be to look at the project Jordan worked on last year with the consolidation of drives on campus into a list.
  6. Jordan: I also send it around this time of the year because there are often more holiday themed drives.
  1. Project Highlights
  1. Academic Initiatives
  1. Pre-Major Advising Reform
  1. Ryan: We met with Max and presented our strategy for approaching this project. We decided to take a two pronged approach: tangible aspects and lobbying aspects. The tangible aspects would be changes made to the advising assignments in general.
  2. Regan: The lobbying aspects would be making sure advisors and administrators are actually making progress.
  3. Ryan: There will be some sort of process within the college office that holds advisors accountable for updating their advisees on major changes.
  4. Jen: Advisors are supposed to do this already. If they are not, I would encourage students to report this to the office of the school. Make sure to be prepared for your meeting with Dr. Janet Tighe.
  5. Reagan: We are more than prepared for this meeting. Max prepared us, and both of us have met with her on different occasions.
  6. Ryan: A lot of these policies are probably written as suggestions, but we want to make a mandatory.
  7. Kristen: A lot of resources exist that we are not aware of, so I would encourage you to do research and frame each point as a questions first in this meeting.  
  8. Daniel: Peer advisors are supposed to do a lot of the emailing and outreach, but they often don’t. I think a better way would be to strengthen the role of peer advisor as an intermediary between the student and the advisor.  
  9. Regan: Talked to jordan as well and we decided that a reform to the training process would be beneficial.
  1. Equity and Inclusion
  1. Water Fountains in the Quad
  1. Thomas: During my campaign, one of the main topics of contention was access to water in the Quad. I am focusing on adding locations, but this will be very difficult. There will be an opportunity to add locations with the upcoming renovation, but I don’t know if adding a few locations will actually address the problem. I am also working on an alternate solution as well.
  2. Arjun: Great project. Did you discuss incorporating this into the Quad renovation?
  3. Thom: I will mention this in my next meeting.
  4. Krone: I want you to be the person to successfully complete this project. I would look at archive board for inspiration from past attempts.
  1. Student and Campus Life
  1. On-campus Recruiting Resources and Advocacy
  1. Ryan: On Friday, Michael, Maria, and I met with Barbara Hewitt. It was an interesting conversation in terms of scheduling concerns, but they definitely agree with the basic premise of the resolution. We talked about changes that could be made on Penn’s campus in order to decrease stigma with a peer-to-peer resources. We also mentioned updating the Career Services website. It was a really productive meeting.
  2. Natasha: Make sure the peer-to-peer counseling is available school-wide, not just Wharton.
  3. Ryan: Right. It would be done through career services, so everyone except nursing. I also stressed the importance of 1-on-1 mentoring for decreased peer pressure that comes with group settings.
  1. External Seats
  1. UC Committee on Campus and Community Life
  1. Jess: We discussed Penn’s relationship to and engagement with the greater Philadelphia community. Please reach out to me with questions.
  2. Jordan: I tested one of the locations mentioned for lead for a class, and the levels were dangerously high. Hopefully it is addressed soon.
  3. Jess: Yes, it will be addressed with the renovation.
  1. Trustee Committee on Academic Policy
  1. Brian:Reach out to Max if you have any questions on this update!
  1. Communications