TO THE EDITOR:

THE HOYA’S editorial last week (“Give GUSA Final Funding Say” THE HOYA, Nov. 2, 2007, A2) inaccurately implied that GUSA does not currently have the final authority in divvying up the Student Activities Fund that pays for most of student life on campus. The Student Association has always had this power in principle, and in the last two years, it has worked hard to match this most important of responsibilities with new auditing and accountability tools that will make the system more efficient and maximize utility for the student body. As far as I know, nobody in GUSA has any desire or plans to replace SAC or the other advisory boards.

When students overwhelmingly voted last year to reform the Assembly into the Student Senate, they also voted to give the Senate new powers to audit the advisory boards and make the final call as to how much each board will get. As a result, for the first time in years we have a full picture of how the fund has been used and can have a much more constructive discussion about how to better use it moving forward. This was impossible even a few years ago, and it has now led to a much more open and meaningful debate about the future of student finances at Georgetown.

This coming year will see that partnership between GUSA, the advisory boards and the university move forward. I am confident that, through an honest, complete and consensus-driven examination of past spending policies and future spending plans, this year will see a student-run process that GUSA will lead and can heartily endorse. Although the administration has an important role to play in advising students, as in past years the final decisions on how to deploy the Activities Fund will rest with GUSA. We will, of course, make these decisions in consultation with the experts on the advisory boards.

I am pleased to write in today to let THE HOYA’s editorial board know that we wholeheartedly agree with them on the importance of an open and student-run funding process, and for once, we are fully ahead of the curve.

Eden Schiffmann

Speaker of the Student Senate

Former Editorial Board Member, THE HOYA

Nov. 8, 2007

Have a reaction to this article? Write a letter to the editor.

Comments are closed.