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UCSA recap – Nov. 14

(Jeremy Chen/Daily Bruin)

By Saumya Gupta

Nov. 17, 2020 11:58 p.m.

Correction: The original version of this article incorrectly stated that Zuleika Bravo is a fourth-year student. In fact, Bravo is a fifth-year student.

This post was updated May 15 at 2:02 p.m.

The University of California Student Association is composed of representatives from the UC campuses’ undergraduate and graduate student governments. The organization’s Board of Directors held its monthly meeting over Zoom on Nov. 14. It discussed basic needs and climate change.

Public Comment:

  • Quinn O’Connor, a third-year theater student and co-founder of the Disabled Student Union at UCLA, and Natalee Decker, a fourth-year design media arts student and member of DSU, said Maria Blandizzi, the dean of students, went against their recommendations during the hiring process for a new UCLA Center for Accessible Education director. Decker also asked for more student oversight of CAE and in the CAE’s hiring processes.
  • Sana Jaffery, a third-year public policy student at UC Riverside, said campus leadership at the UC campuses needs to provide resources for students who are struggling with their leasing situations.

Reports:

  • Jamaal Muwwakkil, the UC student regent, said the regents will not vote on any Mauna Kea and Thirty Meter Telescope-related agenda items until around May.
  • Aidan Arasasingham, the UCSA president, said the UCSA will advocate for additional resources and funding for Student Academic Preparation and Educational Partnerships to recruit and increase retention of students of color after Proposition 16 failed in the 2020 election.
  • Joshua Lewis, the government relations committee chair, said the committee had a meeting with Assemblymember Freddie Rodriguez’s office about Assembly Bill 1155, which UCSA is co-sponsoring. AB 1155 would have universities require fraternities and sororities to report information, such as harassment and other misconduct, to the university. The bill also requires the information to be publicly accessible. Lewis said he and Arasasingham are also requesting to meet with someone from the Biden-Harris education transition team to discuss Arasasingham and Lewis’ federal priorities, such as doubling the Pell Grant.
  • Anais Lieu, the executive director of UCSA, said UCweVote has advocacy plans to help people vote before the next election.

Agenda Items:

  • Lewis and Parshan Khosravi, the government relations director at UCSA, discussed the election results and what that means for their advocacy efforts. Lewis said Biden’s plan for higher education gives the UCSA something to advocate for at the federal level.
  • The UCSA Board of Directors approved the Basic Needs Ad Hoc Committee that will hold the regents accountable to the regents’ recommendations in the Regents Special Committee on Basic Needs’ report and will advocate for underrepresented minority’s specific needs. Zuleika Bravo, a fifth-year Latin American studies and political science student at UCLA, said the Basic Needs Ad Hoc Committee will continue the work of the regent’s committee and fill in the gaps the regents missed in their report on basic needs.
  • The UCSA Board of Directors approved a petition calling on the UC to develop an energy plan that does not require the burning of gas and instead uses clean renewable energy. UCSA passed a task to talk to the regents and provide updates at the February Board of Directors meeting. Andrew Wolfe, a UC Green New Deal Coalition representative and a graduate student from UC San Francisco, said the UC Green New Deal Coalition wants UCSA to ask the regents to be more transparent about its use and divestment of fossil fuels.
  • Naomi Waters, the Racial Justice Now campaign vice chair, said the UC needs to be more transparent in their hiring process when it comes to hiring police officers.
  • The board approved board meeting dates for the 2020-2021 academic year.
  • The board approved the Student of Color Conference budget for the 2021 year.
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Saumya Gupta | News senior staff
Gupta was the 2020-2021 assistant News editor for the national news and higher education beat. She was previously a contributor for the beat. She is also a fourth-year psychology student.
Gupta was the 2020-2021 assistant News editor for the national news and higher education beat. She was previously a contributor for the beat. She is also a fourth-year psychology student.
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