MUSG elects two to SOF Committee

Three residential senators were elected to staff two Marquette University Student Government committees Thursday night at the Thursday’s senate meeting.

During the more than two-hour meeting, one senator was elected to fill a seat on the Budget Committee and two to fill seats on the Student Organization Funding Committee.

Schroeder Hall Senator Matthew Walker, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences, was unanimously elected to the Budget Committee after being the only one to run for the position. Walker previously served as a member of the Student Organization Funding committee when he was a senator for Abbotsford Hall.

“For me, I did SOF last year, so I really wanted to get a new experience at MUSG,” Walker said. “This year, I’m looking at the Budget Committee and get a different perspective. Just get a new look at MUSG and definitely take in a new look at budgeting the funds for SOF rather than taking the money that is budgeted to us.”

Walker comes to the position with support from Financial Vice President Cole Johnson, a junior in the College of Business Administration.

“Matt has unique and fresh ways of thinking about things, so that could provide some excitement as we move into next fiscal year’s budgeting process,” Johnson said.

Walker said he is concerned about how much money the reserve fund takes in each year. He is also writing his own legislation that would amend the SOF budgeting process to allow MUSG to give more money to club sports and other clubs that need support. He hopes his bill will be brought before the senate in the next two to three weeks.

MUSG also filled the two open residential seats on the SOF Committee by electing Carpenter Tower Senator Julia Markun, a sophomore in the College of Communication, and Commuter Senator Aliya Manjee, a freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences. Also running for the position were Off-Campus Senator Lukas Baker, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences; Straz Tower Senator Christian Evans, a freshman in the College of Business Administration; and McCormick Senator J.R. O’Rourke, a freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences.

The MUSG constitution stipulates that SOF Committee members must be elected by a majority vote, meaning 16 votes are required. Markun was elected on the first vote, after which the election became highly contentious. Baker and O’Rourke withdrew their names from consideration after the third runoff vote after receiving only 3 and 2 votes, respectively. Five runoff votes were required before Manjee was elected.

“I was very impressed with the way senate handled the SOF elections last night, especially due to the extended voting that took place,” said Executive Vice President Zach Bowman, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, who chairs the committee. “I think Aliya and Julia bring exactly what we’re looking for the the committee — the desire to approach each application with an open mind and come to a fair and logical decision.”

MUSG also unanimously passed a resolution recommending to the university that the first Tuesday following Sept. 22 be known annually as the Father Naus Day of Kindness. Off-Campus Senator Natasha Hansen, a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, authored the legislation in an effort to memorialize the work and teaching of recently deceased the Rev. John E. Naus, a beloved Marquette figure.