Marquette student government introduces new initiative groups

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Marquette Wire stock photo

Marquette University Student Government held a meeting Sept. 27 to discuss a resolution commending former vice president of inclusive excellence William Welburn and former dean of libraries Janice Welburn for their hard work and dedication to the Marquette community throughout the years, and elect members for new positions on MUSG.

Their first election focused on appointing people for their student organization funding committee. Cameron Heiser, sophomore in the College of Business Administration, oversees the Student Organization Funding committee and said the group focuses on funding for student organizations and club/non-club sports.

Heiser said that all student organizations can apply for funding after completing SOF training on the MUSG website and filling out a form. SOF training will be held in a virtual setting this year, and additional information can be found under the “SOF training” section on the SOF homepage.

The results of the election appointed Zihui Jin, Sierra V. Jones and Sean Martin as this year’s SOF committee.

Zihui Jin, senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, said they are excited to begin work for their committee as well as for their Student Senate position.

“I am looking forward to better serve student organizations and bring more benefits to Marquette student bodies,” Jin said in an email.

Following SOF elections, MUSG also elected a new president pro tempore.

Heiser said that the PPT works with MUSG’s initiative groups and legislative vice president Nicole Laudolff to focus on parts of MUSG’s platform that they want to highlight and incorporate into each year.

Katie Breck, senior in the College of Arts & Sciences and president of MUSG, said there are currently three initiative groups, but MUSG will most likely have four to five groups by the end of this year.

One of the groups is a Racial Justice and Equity group, which Breck said advocates for underrepresented groups and students on campus, finds new ways to integrate racial justice into Marquette’s curriculum and finds ways to support underrepresented students on campus.

The second group is the Mental Health initiative group which Breck said determines how MUSG can help improve students’ mental health and works with student organizations as well as the counseling center to plan events.

Breck said the group is also concentrating on supporting the LGBTQ+ student experience on campus by working with these students and groups to cultivate more community spaces and a more welcoming community on campus which is “something that has been missing,” Breck said.

MUSG’s third initiative group is still being confirmed, but Breck said it will either be a campus sustainability group or a first generation student experiences group.

MUSG’s meeting then went on to discuss how they would commend William Welburn, vice president for inclusive excellence, and Dean Janice Welburn, chief officer of libraries, for their dedication and services to Marquette after retiring soon this year.

“With both of their work and how it has impacted the student community, it is important to recognize their [William Welburn and Janice Welburn] work on campus,” Breck said.

“With William Welburn’s Campus Climate studies, work with the Black Student Council, contributions to the Hispanic Serving Institution initiative and their leadership for the Race, Ethnic and Indigenous Studies program; it’s important to commemorate that work and acknowledge that more work needs to be done,” Breck said.

Breck said it is also important to honor Janice Welburn’s work making Marquette — especially Raynor Memorial Libraries a more welcoming and inclusive place to all Marquette community members..

Breck said Janice Welburn improved the accessibility of Marquette’s libraries to different students and groups around campus, helped develop the Digital Scholarship Lab and provided their support to student-operated mental health programs/initiatives on campus.

Breck said MUSG is planning on having their recognitions for William and Janice Welburn in their legislation which will be uploaded to their website, and will soon be having an event to celebrate their work on campus.

“I think for MUSG, the purpose is to represent students and to be the voice of Marquette’s students, so it’s important to acknowledge leadership on campus like William and Janice Welburn for the work they’ve done for students and MUSG,” Laudolff said.

Breck said MUSG encourages all students to attend their meetings, which are hosted every Monday night from 7:00-8:30 p.m. in the Alumni Memorial Union Room 227.

This story was written by Julia Abuzzahab. She can be reached at julianna.abuzzahab@marquette.edu