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The current frigid weather makes spring seem far away, but the borough council and the Student Government Association are already looking forward to mid-March.
During Tuesday’s SGA meeting, the organization’s director of external affairs, Elijah Rosenthal (junior, political science), said that the borough council was already considering its response to Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s off-date celebration of St. Patrick’s Day.
Last year’s celebration of what students called “IUPatty’s Day” – a St. Patrick’s Day celebration held before the actual holiday since St. Patrick’s Day took place during spring break – resulted in complaints from the town.
The borough council has already begun discussing the matter, Rosenthal said.
He suggested that IUP organizations should go into the community and clean up on Sunday morning after the celebrations are over, mentioning that groups like the IUP Environmentally Conscious Organization and Greek organizations could be involved.
SGA Vice President Zachery Chandler (junior, technology support and training) brought up the State College practice of shutting down bars and liquor stores during the St. Patrick’s Day celebration at Penn State University. He said that the borough council could consider that as an option.
A number of SGA members protested aloud, saying that students who wanted to drink would find ways to get alcohol despite the closures.
Chandler said that State College’s approach had resulted in less total property damage, but other members of the SGA said they were unconvinced. The matter was ultimately dropped in favor of other business.
The next community open forum will be held Feb. 13 from 7-8:30 p.m. Five IUP campus leaders and five members of the borough council will be at the meeting and will answer questions from attendees.
“The community open forum is just a chance to get everything out in the open,” Rosenthal said.
He said that the event was meant to show that people on both sides of the “tension” between IUP and the Indiana community were working to diffuse the situation.
He is also drafting a formal invitation to the borough council for them to attend an SGA meeting, he said.
In other business, a number of vacant positions within the SGA were filled.
Monique Leas (junior, biology/pre-med) was elected Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education chair and will represent IUP SGA to PASSHE and representatives of other PASSHE schools.
Elena Kapp (senior, international business) was elected to the position of Eberly representative and will serve as the liaison between the Eberly College of Business and the SGA.
Jessica Stewart (junior, early childhood education) was elected to the position of conference chair and was, as the only education major present, selected as College of Education representative.
No internal affairs chair has been chosen.