Student Senate holds first meeting of school year

The 49th Student Senate during confirmations on Monday
Photo Submitted by Ciara Mims

The 49th Student Senate held its first meeting on Monday, with reports from three committees, including nine confirmations on the Elections and Appointments Committee, and reports from the Executive and Judicial branches.

Senate President Christopher Miller officially called the meeting to order at 6:08 p.m., and Judicial and Rules chair Andy Jean-Baptiste then led the moment of dedication with prayer. Next, student leaders and students in the gallery sang the Alma Mater and recited the Pledge of Allegiance. Soon after roll call and approval of agenda/minutes, Miller acknowledged guests in the gallery.

“Thank you all for coming to the 49th Student Senate’s first meeting,” Miller said.

The meeting then moved to announcement and committee reports, starting with Senator Shanel Brown from the Internal Development and Select Committee. She reflected on the committees’ first leadership training retreat and said it went well. She reminded senators to complete a personality survey to help her determine future trainings as well.

Senator Zoe Mitchell from the Student Relations Committee, Senator Jean-Baptiste from the Judicial and Rules Committee, and Senator Xavier McClinton from the Organization and Finance Committee had no reports other than tentative meeting dates, and that official meeting times were still being determined. Senator Carrington Whigham from the Elections and Appointments Committee offered her expectations and hopes for the meeting.

“We have nine confirmations so let’s try to be as thorough and focused tonight as we can be,” Whigham said. “I encourage you guys all to have at least two questions on hand … and I hope for a good meeting.”

Before moving to the next point, Miller reported the summer was great, and that they are actively working information out with Joint Operations. Student Body President Rochard Moricette took the podium to discuss reports from the Executive Branch. 

In the midst of stealing laughs from those in attendance, Moricette confirmed Executive Branch meetings will be held on Wednesdays at 7 p.m. He also discussed Inauguration events, to be held Sept. 12-15, including a game night, convocation, community service and more. He discussed university appointments, his goals for university liaisons, and an event to address sexual assault on campus.

“We’re working with the Victims Advocate Program for the office to host different things,” Moricette said. “One of the first things we’re going to try to work in conjunction with them to host is a sexual assault or sexual violence event that’s going to be called ‘Walk a Mile in Her Shoes.’”

The event is set for Sept. 27.

According to, “A Walk a Mile in Her Shoes Event is a playful opportunity for men to raise awareness in their community about the serious causes, effects and remediations to men's sexualized violence against women.”

Men typically walk a mile in high-heeled shoes at these events. Moricette also mentioned another goal of the Executive Branch is to get students more involved with the medical marijuana initiative.

Ricky Rodriguez from the Judicial Branch took the podium after Moricette, and mentioned a “Know your Rights” event and the building of new parking lots, both coming soon.

Shortly following the Judicial Branch reports, confirmations began. Among those confirmed were Jaelynn Ballard, Bianca Dacres, Marcellis Dorsey, Ivy Grant, Ryanne Taylor, Heaven Williams, Korey Creary, Azsha Hampton and D’Shay Pressley.

There were no reports from the Activity and Service Fee Liaison, the Senate Executive Committee, Campus Activities Board, A&S Agency, or University Liaison.

 Miller adjourned the meeting at 8:46 p.m.