Weekly SGA senate brief: Feb. 8, 2023

Here’s what happened at Student Government Association’s Formal Senate Meeting on Feb. 8, 2023


Executive Report 

– Announced upcoming the Student Government election season.An information session for all those interested in running for an SGA position will be held Feb. 13. Students may contact Neda Rasul at [email protected] for more information.


Update to Campus Crime Advisory from Jan. 25, presented by SGA Vice President Matthew Gerrets.

– Reviewed the events that took place on Jan. 25, in which 23 vehicles were broken into at the university parking garage;

– Stated that UPD and Dean of Students have reached out to victims.

New information about the incident: 

– The vehicle used in the burglary was stolen hours before and has since been recovered;

– Vehicle break-ins have increased around Austin, particularly in the area surrounding campus.

Going forward, UPD will:

– Continue increased patrolling;

– Monitor cameras more attentively;

– Employ new camera technology to alert officers of movement during high-risk hours;

– Implement new lighting techniques aimed to deter future incidents of this nature.

UPD maintains that it is ultimately up to vehicle owners to secure their vehicle as much as possible. They have advised the following:

– Do not leave valuables in vehicles;

– Keep vehicles locked at all times;

– Park in well-lit areas.


Special Guests

First, committee member Ethan Tobias gave a presentation on the Austin Impact Strategic Goal.

As part of Strategic Plan 27, the committee’s ultimate goals are:

– To engage local communities through transformative experiential learning, research, service and leadership experiences; 

– To have 100% of St. Edward’s undergraduate students participate in experiential learning prior to graduation.

The committee will achieve success through:

– Integrating curricular, co-curricular, extracurricular and research activities into experiential learning;

– Developing strategic partnerships between the university, students and external entities;

– Personalizing education and career preparation;

– Adding value to the Austin community through research, service and engagement.


Tobias announced the committee’s plans for an Austin Impact Internship Program that will take place.

This program will:

– Involve 25 students as interns with five different corporate partners in Austin;

– Match students and companies with mutually beneficial interests;

– Provide on-going professional development sessions throughout the program;

– Be open to students across all majors.


Next, an Infrastructure and Resources Committee presentation by Vice President for Enrollment Management Tracy Manier, Assistant Vice President for University Operations Jim Morris and Gerrets was presented.

The Infrastructure and Resources Committee focuses on expanding university revenue sources to increase institutional longevity and efficiency.

The committee will measure success by:

– Analyzing current revenue and endowment programs;

– Investigating on-campus environmental sustainability; 

– Managing on-campus food and water waste;

– Examining on-campus facilities management and maintenance;

– Evaluating infrastructure;

– Reviewing survey results from students, faculty and alumni.


Currently, the committee has two priority projects: Capital Campaign and Environmental Justice.

What we know about the Capital Campaign:

– SEU has completed a feasibility study with Graham Pelton, a non-profit fundraising consulting firm to identify forward fundraising plans;

– There is an established plan and timeline moving forward that includes fundraising leadership training and an identification of the top 100 fundraising prospects.

Half-year highlights for the environmental justice project include:

– Installation of on-site renewable energy source;

– Development and launch of an on-campus “food forest” that will serve as a teaching tool and sustainable food source;

– Collaboration with Students for Sustainability and Bon Appetit to develop a food garden;

– Launch of second pollinator (adjacent to Equity Hall) that will attract monarch butterflies and serve as a symbol of social justice;

– Awards from Air Central Texas and It’s Time Texas for environmental leadership presented to faculty members Amy Concillio and Paul Walter and students Luke Tobias and Ethan Tobias received;

– Recognition of Sorin Oak as “Large Tree of the Year” by the City of Austin and Treefolk.

The Environmental Justice project is on track to achieve the annual goals set to reduce campus energy and water consumption and to generate off-grid campus energy.


The senate did not have any new business to review. The meeting concluded at 7:47 p.m. with a final roll call.