SA in Brief


Jacob Boyko, News Editor (He/Him)

During the South Dakota State University Student Association’s meeting Sept. 20, senators were addressed by President Barry Dunn, ratified the constitution of a new club, were given updates on the COVID-19 response and swore in three at-large senators. 


Barry Dunn’s address

President Dunn thanked the senate for their support of One Day for STATE, which generated over $1.9 million in donations for students at SDSU. Dunn compared that figure with another state school, Dakota State University, whose goal is to raise $150,000 for its  students.

“To raise the kind of money we did for the size of school we are, it was really great,” Dunn said. 

According to Dunn, the Frost Arena renovation is in gear. 

“We’re going to name it the First Bank and Trust Arena, which is kind of hard to do because for me it’s always been the Frost Arena,” Dunn said. “It was being constructed my freshman year and opened my sophomore year. It’s been around a long, long time and needs to be refreshed.”

Dunn hinted at a big announcement on the capital campaign Oct. 21 during Hobo Day weekend.

The government affairs chair, Anna Shane, asked Dunn what the biggest challenge would be going forward in “this new normal state.” Dunn told the Senate he thinks the biggest challenge is the delta variant of COVID-19 and any other future variants. 

“As a little guy, my parents took my brothers and sisters and I to get our polio and smallpox vaccinations,” Dunn said, adding that vaccinations are a responsibility for community members. Dunn encouraged students to “trust in science.”


Jack Rabbits Lifting Club

The senators unanimously voted to approve the Jack Rabbits Lifting Club, with Nick Thompson serving as president and Gavin Baker serving as vice president. 

“We want to provide an opportunity for all students to feel comfortable about going to the gym. The gym can be a scary place, and we don’t want it to feel that way,” Thompson said.

The club will teach students the “ins and outs of the gym” as well as proper nutrition. The club will have “mentors” to support and teach newcomers about the gym and guide them on their workouts.

According to Thompson, there are about 40 to 50 students interested in joining.


COVID-19 Update

According to Michaela Willis, the COVID-19 response team has been meeting more frequently with a focus of continuing operation during the campus dining employee shortage. The goal is to prevent outbreaks that could force increasingly valuable dining staff members to quarantine. 

“We’re trying to be proactive on that front as we face challenges with the delta variant,” Willis said. 

The response team is working to make COVID-19 test kits available in residence halls. Students will be able to find out whether they are positive in minutes. 


New Senators

Senators Garret Satterly, Grant Sternhagen and Vanessa Valadez took the oath of office and officially joined the Student Association.