While both Chase Grindberg, North Dakota State Student Body President, and Marisa Pacella, Student Body Vice President, admit to having their work cut out for them in the spring semester, both also expressed excitement to complete their work.
Pacella is particularly excited to gain more student senate members and to work with the incoming executive team come the end of the semester and transition to a new student body president and vice president.
Grinberg expressed the team’s plan to combat burnout within student government as the semester draws to a close, noting that it has been a concern in the past.
The two plan to address burnout by putting themselves first and keeping their energy up; “If we appear burned out, it bleeds through everything. It all starts with us,” Grindberg said.
The two have five initiatives that they have been working toward already and plan to continue to lobby for in the North Dakota legislature.
One point is to lobby for funding for Dunbar Hall to improve the facilities and provide more research space for students.
Another building that will receive lobbying attention from student government is Harris Hall, which has been nicknamed the “Frankenstein building,” as additions have been made to the building with little apparent cohesion in mind.
“If we appear burned out, it bleeds through everything. It all starts with us,”
Student government hopes to achieve a more coherent layout and transform the space already available in the building to better suit students’ needs.
Student government also plans to lobby for maintaining the current funding formula to ensure the appropriate allocation of resources to NDSU.
The fourth point they wish to lobby for is to return the Challenge Grant fund to a more secure financial status, noting that the fund took a huge monetary hit with the recent budget cuts made to higher education.
Lastly, student government plans to continue to lobby for open education resources (OARs) in general education classrooms and to up the funding for such a project.
The upcoming senate meeting plans to address two major concerns: addressing a free subscription to the New York Times for every student and improving the audio systems in Shepperd Arena.
Both of these concerns fall under reserve requests, which are requests to dip into unallocated funds to achieve various goals. Reserve requests such as these helped finance several budgets across campus last year.
Also in store is tier one organizations presenting their budgets to student senate and applications for student court and senate opening up.
Pacella summarized the intention behind participating in student government, stating, “It comes down to caring.” Grindberg added, “We’re here to serve the students.”
If students would like to address concerns or are interested in student government, an open forum will take place 1 p.m. Jan. 22 in the Hidatsa room in the Memorial Union. The forum will also present big initiatives.