Addressing the new semester

Renee Rosenow

This year the student body will have lots to do besides attending class regularly.

One of the most important involvements that we have to look forward to is the programming phase of the new Davies Center.

As most of you have heard, we will be getting a new university center paid for by the students coming soon. There is a schedule for the new building that ranges from programming and design to construction that is set to conclude for occupancy in 2012.

For freshman, this means a new Davies Center will be occupied for the first time after nearly two decades of planning. During the fall semester this year, Bray/Burt Hill, our architect/engineering firm that was chosen to design the Davies Center, will be holding focus groups and town-hall style meetings around campus in order to get student input. The groups will include many people from sections all around campus and will focus on what we want the Davies Center to look and feel like, as well as what sorts of spaces we want in the building. These sessions will be held during the week of Sep. 22.

Another activity that Blugolds everywhere enjoy is our Homecoming, which will be the first weekend in October. Soon it will be that time of year and we can look forward to all sorts of entertainment, activities and jolly temperament. I can’t wait! Tentatively, after Homecoming we will be engaging a random sampling of students and alumni in order to address our school spirit. The survey will ask questions related to school spirit and a mascot. There has been much interest over the years in getting a mascot. As a member of the Mascot Committee, I won’t try and sway your vote either way, but I encourage everyone on campus to take note of what spirit our campus has and think about Blugold pride.

If students want to know more or find out how they can participate, they should look for the Student Senate out on the Campus mall on Monday, Sep. 15. If you are interested in becoming more involved before Senate Day, we are currently accepting applications for vacancies on Senate this week. With the new Davies Center and many other projects on the horizon, it is a great way to get involved. Otherwise, if you just want to stop and see what we are about we will be handing out ice cream floats from 11 to 1.

This year happens to be the last year of our campus food provider’s contract. Sodexho’s bid will be up for extension against other food-service providers for the next contract. There has been a growing interest in more healthy, organic or locally grown food on campus and this spring is our chance to make those a part of a new food contract. Some changes have already been made by Sodexho, like environmentally friendly coffee, but I am sure we can extend that change to more foods across campus.

Student Senate is involved in numerous things around campus, and we are always looking for more involvement from students. Some of the responsibilities we have: setting the segregated fee rate year to year; funding organized activities such as Student Health Services and Athletics; helping new organizations get started and keeping up-todate; planning events such as House Day for students looking at finding a house or apartment to rent off campus; organizing lobby efforts; keeping good relations with the community; working with the administration and faculty and advocating for student rights and diversity.

Welcome back to Eau Claire and I look forward to serving you, the student body.

Lauer is a junior biochemistry/molecular biology major and guest columnist for The Spectator.