Student Senate opposes policy limiting lodging options

A new UW administrative policy will require faculty to reserve lodging locations through Concur or Fox World Travel agents during immersion or study abroad trips

Student+Senate+also+passed+a+resolution+in+support+of+the+Hmong+Student+Association+Culture+Core+Conference+taking+place+this+Saturday.

Photo by Lindsey Ambrosius

Student Senate also passed a resolution in support of the Hmong Student Association Culture Core Conference taking place this Saturday.

Student Senate passed a resolution in opposition to a UW administrative policy that streamlines lodging at which students and faculty stay during immersion or study abroad trips through Concur or a Fox World Travel agent.

The policy, known as UW Administrative Policy 415 Purchase and Payment of Lodging, limits where students would be able to stay during immersion or study abroad trips effective in March 2018.

The policy requires faculty to arrange lodging through larger chain hotels or lodging options as opposed to hostels or smaller chain hotels, according to the resolution. The change would increase the price of immersion or study abroad trips for students.

Incentive for the change is identified as liability risk for the UW System, Senator Austin Northagen said.

Kristina Haideman, the Student Office of Sustainability director, spoke in support of the resolution.

“I think based on our university and high impact practices, having the system say what the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire can do is part of their responsibility but going against students and making it $1,000 more expensive for students to have that high impact practice and participate in different cultures and communities is contrary to what we promote,” Haideman said.

Angel Ramirez, the mascot coordinator, said he thinks the main point of immersion trips is for students to immerse themselves. Staying in larger chain hotels moves people away from the immersion itself, he said.

“I think if we want to give students these high impact experiences that making it required to book with Fox agency kind of takes away from that,” Ramirez said.

The resolution passed 22-0-2.

Other News

  • Ryan Keller, an off-campus senator, resigned his seat on Student Senate.
  • Thomas Rocque was sworn in as an off-campus senator.
  • Senate passed a special allocation bill that allocated $1,380 to the Power Lifting Club to pay for registration fees for the 2018 USA Powerlifting Collegiate National Championships.
  • Senator Austin Northagen introduced a bill for the Student Office of Sustainability to fund and place additional water filters in McPhee Strength and Performance Center, HAAS Fine Arts Center, Hilltop Center and the Crest Wellness Center. The total funding would be $30,000. The bill will be voted on next week.
  • Student Office of Sustainability Director Kristina Haideman introduced a bill to fund equipment and tools for a “makerspace” in the basement of McIntyre Library. The bill will be voted on next week.
  • Senate passed a resolution in support of the Hmong Student Association Culture Core Conference taking place this Saturday.