1/20 A.S. Council

Disclaimer: The weekly A.S. Council column is not meant to be a news story but rather an individualized account of what occurs at Council meetings.

Today’s council meeting was heavily oriented towards the Division I debate. During public input, a handful of students took the podium to share their thoughts on a potential Division I referendum. Two students voiced their support for a move to Division I while one spoke out against a referendum. Gary Lee, a junior in Marshall College, pointed out that although Division I would be an exciting move for UCSD, there are other issues such as student housing and parking that the university has to deal with right now. He definitely has a point when it comes to parking.

After public input, Senior Associate Athletics director Ken Grosse and Deputy Athletics Director Wendy Taylor May gave a much-anticipated presentation on the case for Division I athletics. Grosse expressed the opinion that it would be a natural progression for UCSD and pointed out that the university now has a more comprehensive approach to going Division I. May echoed much of what Grosse and presented Council members with a brief summary of the costs that a new student fee would be help finance. According to May, the fee would support a long-term sustainable model for Division I.

When the floor opened up for questions, Warren Council Senator Jonathan Young asked if the Division I program would eventually become self-sustaining, but May pointed out that this would be an unrealistic goal because only a tiny portion of Division I programs do so.

Roosevelt Senator Ashley Awe noted that she has heard of numerous students who chose to come to UCSD precisely because of its reputation as “UC Socially Dead” and also brought up the issue of grade inflation of student athletes at Harvard.

The discussion on the referendum continued later in the meeting when Marshall Senator Tara Vahdani brought up the table of student fees in the document and how to make it easier for students to understand. Council eventually decided to table the vote until next week, the last possible opportunity to vote on the referendum, after they take time to review the language of the document. Members of Council stressed the importance of making the document as clear as possible for students.

After the lengthy debate on the Division I referendum, the two transfer senators gave a presentation on the findings of surveys that they conducted in person with transfer students. The senators provided recommendations for what A.S. Council can do to facilitate the inclusion of transfer students in campus life and pointed out that ACTA (All-Campus Transfer Association) needs restructuring.

And that’s all she wrote. Until next time.