Student government embraces new faces, new name at meeting

Jenna Staul

Senators and directors decide Allocation Committee members

Former Executive Director Katie Hale calls for a vote during the first Undergraduate Student Government meeting yesterday. DANIEL DOHERTY | DAILY KENT STATER

Credit: DKS Editors

Undergraduate Student Government met for the first time yesterday as its Undergraduate Student Senator predecessors bid emotional farewells to their roles in student government.

After the passing of the gavel from Katie Hale to Jonathan Bey, newly elected executive director, the new USG met briefly to vote on the vice president and parliamentarian positions, which went to senators Eric Smith and Tim Muir, respectively. Several members of USG were absent from the meeting because of schedule conflicts.

“It feels good to finally be in this position,” Bey said .

Hale, in a tearful good-bye to her position and colleagues, called her time in USS “a journey” as each senator extended advice to the individuals who will proceed them.

“You’ll come to discover that you are a part of Kent State’s history, and that’s really important,” said John Wetmore, former senator for governmental affairs.

In their final moments as senators, USS members passed an “emergency” resolution to honor adviser Donna Carlton, officially making June 23 Donna Carlton Day at Kent State.

“She deserves it,” said Mike Hammond, who stepped down from his position as senator for research and development. “She’s the hardest working woman on this campus.”

USS also voted on the recommendations for the Allocation and Programming committees.

Joe Derkin, senator for residence halls, said he enjoyed his first meeting as an official member of student government.

“I liked the heart-felt speeches,” Derkin said. “I’m really looking forward to the next year.”

Samuel Marcum, senator for the College of Architecture and Environmental Design, spoke to Bey following the meeting to discuss the specifics of his role as a senator.

“I’m going to try to get a hold of the dean of the college before the end of the semester to find out if their are any issues he’d like the senate to hear next year,” Marcum said.

Wasting no time, the new USG members immediately moved into their new desks in the student organization offices, readying themselves for the upcoming year.

“It’s most definitely different, you’re in it,” said Adam Smithberger, new director for communications who formerly worked in public relations for USS. “These next couple of weeks are going to be more about feeling it out and getting adjusted.”

Smithberger said, beside the addition of new members, the greatest change USG has to offer students is a more effective government.

“The amount of stuff we are going to get done (is the biggest difference),” Smithberger said. “We’ll be a lot more productive.”

Contact student politics reporter Jenna Staul at [email protected].