Fiorella Beccaglia A&E Editor
On Wednesday, Nov. 7, the second President’s Breakfast of the Fall 2018 semester was held in the President’s Dining Room at Hurley Hall. During the breakfast, the Eastern Student Government Association (SGA) outlined a report to the student body and administrators, including President Elsa Núñez, to discuss various key topics affecting the university. Representatives of many clubs and organizations were in attendance and contributed to the discussion. The SGA President, Francesco Ricigliano, led the conversation and announced the state of the SGA, its plans, and accomplishments throughout this semester.
One important issue the administration is trying to tackle is “Not Anymore,” Eastern’s online interpersonal violence prevention program that provides information about consent, bystander intervention, sexual assault, and dating and domestic violence.
The administration requires Eastern students to view the video-based program every year, but there are always low levels of completion. President Núñez asked students to collaborate with some ideas on how they could achieve better results. As the microphone was passed around, many great suggestions were made such as offering students housing priority points, doing a gift card giveaway, and other incentives that could encourage students to participate by obtaining something in return.
Garrett Bozylinsky, Chief Information Officer of the university’s Information Technology Services (ITS), also talked about the department’s initiatives and accomplishments. ITS will soon upgrade major technology infrastructure throughout the university and is trying to upgrade the entire wireless network. Mr. Bozylinsky expressed his priority of improving performance and security, especially with accounts and confidential information. ITS is also becoming more involved with the Eastern community. Mr. Bozylinsky is working on a campus-wide IT assessment survey that will be sent out Spring 2019. He also has frequent meetings with the Dean, many different departments, and the SGA.
Another topic of discussion was the SGA’s New Administration White Paper Response written to the governor of Connecticut. The document summarizes the feedback received from the faculty and staff at Eastern as well as SGA. This feedback is in response to the questions posed by President of the CSCU, Mark Ojakian, and his interest in improving the system and protecting student interests. The administration and the SGA’s focuses are very similar. They emphasized the importance of policymakers protecting funding for higher education as a priority and viewing attending college “not as merely supplemental or optional, but an imperative.” The White Paper also encourages the state to consider providing more need-based financial aid and defending the interests of underserved or nontraditional students.
Lastly, the Eastern SGA’s Campus Climate Resolution was also a crucial topic of discussion. In light of the racially charged incidents that occurred at Eastern in the Spring and Fall semesters of 2018, the SGA senate passed a resolution expressing its support of all students and its condemnation of such acts. An email was sent out to the student body in which they wrote, “Be it resolved, the Student Government Association of Eastern Connecticut State University affirms its conviction that our campus thrives on its diversity and capacity to hold healthy discussion and condemn all behavior acting in opposition to such values.” The Campus Climate Resolution corroborates Eastern’s value of inclusion, reminding everyone that all members of the Eastern community should be united in supporting the institution and its students.