The newly elected senators of Georgetown University Student Association marked their official entrance into student government by setting an agenda and goals for the upcoming year on Sunday afternoon.

GUSA’s primary aim for the year will be reforming the student activities fee, a $100 sum charged to students as part of their tuition. When the fee was introduced in 2001 via referendum, GUSA leaders hoped interest would accrue to reach $10 million, but as of now the return has been minimal, according to Interim GUSA Senate Speaker Chris Pigott (COL ’12). This year, GUSA will attempt to reform the fee so that students gain a greater return on their investment. Students will be asked to participate in a referendum in late fall.

Other issues that GUSA plans to address are Georgetown University Transportation Shuttle bus weekend funding, the university’s green initiative, student space, advocacy and student safety, among others.

Pigott, who represents the Nevils district, said that he plans to focus much of his attention on student safety and student activities for this coming year.

“We are going to hit the ground running,” he said. “Regular meetings are important in staying up to date on issues. A big part of this is talking to the administration.”

With new, enthusiastic faces joining their ranks, veteran senators are eager to begin substantive work.

“This is a big year with a lot of good things ahead,” Sen. Colton Malkerson (COL ’13) said. “All the seats are filled, and there is a good crop of freshmen. Maintaining this [level of participation] will lead to a very productive year.”

While the new senators are excited to begin the new term, student turnout in last week’s election may indicate student apathy. In the election for the Village A E-H district, which Zoe Walpole (SFS ’13) won, only about 5.5 percent percent of residents voted. In the Henle 1-48 district, won by Brendhan Haas (COL ’12), the percentage only rose to about 6.5 percent of residents. The highest turnout was in Copley Hall, with roughly 68 percent.

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