The Student Association Senate heard Jason Michnick, DeKalb economic development planner, speak about increasing student involvement in the development of DeKalb revitalization strategies during a Sunday meeting.
The houses located between Lucinda Avenue and Dresser Road, where Greek row is located, have seen an increase in families occupying these homes during the past few years, Michnick said.
Declining enrollment is contributing to the surplus of student housing available, which has caused an increase in families occupying these housing options, Michnick said. These housing options were not designed for families.
“A lot of the purpose-built student housing in that area is now being now filled with families, and there’s a situation now where there are quite a few families living in the same area as students,” Mitchnick said during the meeting. “And with that comes specific issues, public safety being the number one issue that we’re seeing, so there is an increase in crime in that area.”
There are new community tasks forces that students can become involved with to adjust to the changing demographics.
“A lot of the families that are coming out to DeKalb are coming from Cook County and Rockford and are generally lower income,” Michnick said during the meeting. “Because the housing was built for students is exceptionally affordable...there are issues that come along with that, so we want to make sure that we’re hearing the voices of the students because there still are quite a few students living in that neighborhood.”
New student organizations
The Northern Illinois Tabletop Club gained approval from Senators during Sunday’s meeting. The organization is for any game that can be played on a table, including card and board games. The club is open to anyone who has interest in games of this nature, and once the club grows large enough, different leadership positions will be appointed. These leaders will then be responsible for teaching new members how to play the various games.
The group is committed to games that are of interest to its members. If a member owns a certain game, he or she is welcomed to bring it to the club so other members can also learn how to play. There is a sign up sheet located in Affinity for Gaming, 811 W. Lincoln Highway, which students can provide their name and ZID. Dalton Daily will contact students with information via their student email.
“It’s a good way for [students] to meet people and kind of escape from life for a while,” Dalton Daily said.
The Reaching Intellectual Success in Engagement, referred to as R.I.S.E, was also approved during the meeting. The organization encourages professional and social experience by connecting students to organizations on campus that would benefit their development. R.I.S.E. focuses on connecting students who want to get involved. Founder Maalik Phipps was a community adviser at New Residence Hall East when she noticed freshmen and transfer students have a difficult time finding organizations they want to get involved with.
“Our mission is to progressively connect campus resources with student life and promote success and student engagement and student involvement”
New Student Association leadership
SA members were appointed to various committees and leadership positions.
Senator Naomi Bolden was appointed community service coordinator. This position entails holding members of the Senate accountable for completing their community service requirements in order to set an example as leaders on campus.
“I believe it is important for all senators to complete community service hours because it reassures our constituents that we care about them and our campus,” Bolden said.
Senator Matthew Moore was appointed sergeant-at-arms. This position is held to promote the general welfare of the SA. The sergeant-at-arms is also responsible for escorting people from meetings prior to voting.
Senator Edward Bowie III was appointed the legislative director. His role is to promote voting and legislative involvement from students and the DeKalb community.
Senator Brandon Lesnicki was appointed deputy speaker. It is the responsibility of this position to help Speaker Christine Wang in writing legislature as well as stepping in SA Senate leader when Wang is unavailable.