Open Letter to the Speaker of the Senate


September 20, 2016

Dear Speaker of the Senate,

The Student Union Senate represents the main arm of advocacy for our student body. Advocacy is at the heart of Student Union not only at Washington University but on university campuses across the nation and the world. Traditionally, universities have been hotbeds for advocacy related activity that are important to the lives of students as empowered and responsible members of society. Senate has a unique opportunity to speak and act on behalf of the student body in the coming year, and to make a significant impact on our community in the long run.

Student Union Executives have identified a list of issues that are of great interest to the student body and invite Senate to advocate for the students by pursuing the following outcomes:

  • Resolution on Freedom of Speech
    • To respond to the Faculty Senate’s Freedom of Speech resolution and the University of Chicago’s Letter on Academic Freedom;
    • To provide an educated take on the issue of Freedom of Expression at Washington University; and
    • To encourage each student to confront the matter and develop an informed opinion
  • Opportunity Fund Task Force
    • To understand that a complete experience at Washington University includes more than attending classes; and
    • To work with students and the Office of Student Success to create a framework for an Opportunity Fund that will ensure that students from low-income backgrounds will not be excluded from having a complete college experience
  • It’s On Us 2.0 Task Force
    • To build on the existing It’s On Us to Intervene campaign and work with students, student organizations, and campus partners to unify resources and create a curriculum for Bystander Intervention Training that is tailored to Washington University and creates a call to action for the entire student body
    • To have this ready for implementation by the Spring of 2017
  • Campus Safety Task Force
    In light of the shooting on campus last semester
  • To create meaningful dialogue between Emergency Management at Washington University and the student body;
  • To define the role of the broader faculty and administration of Washington University after a campus emergency; and
  • To collect student’s input into the Emergency Management’s programs and initiatives;
  • To communicate the programs and initiatives to the student body
  • Constitution Task Force
    • To review the Student Union Constitution in order to ensure greater accountability and transparency in the General Budget, provide more opportunities for public participation in SU’s advocacy projects, and update clauses that are outdated to better achieve Student Union’s functions

We believe in Senate’s ability to achieve the above objectives, advance the interests of the students, and inspire our community.

We look forward to your progress and future success.

Kenneth Sng – President
Sankalp Kapur – VP Administration
Vikram Biswas – VP Finance
Richard Wu – VP Programming
Amelia Fong – VP Public Relations

Attachment: Open Letter to the Speaker of the Senate