SA reads first draft of GAF, passes 2+2 program resolution


Allie Cummings, Students' Association Reporter

Through many months of work, the General Activity Fee (GAF) first draft was read and debated at the Jan. 14 Students’ Association meeting.

It was a long and tense debate that consumed most of the meeting. Issues such as student organization funding, expanding Wellness Center hours and services, a transportation system and an athletic department deficit were notable.

The athletic department operational deficit discussion stood out with a heated debate.

The main concerns were making sure all constituents were being represented while making important decisions surrounding the GAF strategic plan. Senators voiced their opinions about representing low-income, international and other groups of students while discussing these fund increases and how they will affect the student population as a whole.

“One of the pieces of this plan is to ask you, as students, to support athletics in this particular way. We need to support them in what they do,” said Vice President of Student Affairs and SA Adviser Michaela Willis concerning the athletic deficit funds.

Government Affairs Chair Cole McDougall was one of the opposing voices concerning an increase in funds for athletics.

“We are overlooking other students,” he said. “We need to take care of our general students before they are expected to take care of athletics.”

Sen. Nick Lorang, who is also the GAF steering committee chair, responded with a number of points as well.

“Athletics is a widespread brand ambassador for the university,” he said. “Think about the positive experiences that students have at athletic events.”

For more coverage on the GAF debate, the Collegian wrote an additional story.

SA also passed Resolution 18-07 that supports “2+2” Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine Degree. SDSU and the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine entered a Memorandum of Understanding to see the “financial feasibility” of a program where the college can collaborate in veterinary medical education.

Students would complete the first two years of professional education in Brookings and the final two years of the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree on Minnesota’s St. Paul campus. This would have 20 enrolled.

This program could save students money for veterinary education and open more career opportunities.

Sen. Megan Kellan, who represents the College of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences said, “This is a really cool opportunity because the state of South Dakota will never have a four-year veterinary medicine program because we don’t have the resources to have a large animal hospital.”

The first reading of 18-08-R also took place, which would provide two reserved parking

spots in the Wagner lot for Purple Heart recipients. This resolution was recently moved by The Parking and Traffic Committee and will be further discussed in future meetings.

Due to Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, SA will not meet next Monday. The next meeting is 7 p.m. Jan. 28 in the Lewis and Clark room of the Student Union.