By Alex Mosher
Late Night with a Legislator
Since the beginning of this school year, the Associated Students of the University of Nevada’s department of legislative affairs has been bringing legislators to the University of Nevada, Reno.
“Late night has met the objective it set out to do: connecting students with policymakers and making legislators aware of student concerns,” said Alex Bybee, director of ASUN legislative affairs.
Alex Bybee said he saw a 100 percent increase between the first Late Night with a Legislator and the second one. He said this could have been due to changing the venue the second time, from the Linn Reading Room in the Reynolds School of Journalism, to the Starbucks in the Joe Crowley Student Union.
He said the increase could have also had something to do with the department’s new implementation of giving away free tall Starbucks drinks to the first guests. Bybee said Late Night with a Legislator will continue this tradition into next semester.
After being presented the no-smoking on campus policy, the ASUN senate sent the bill back to the committee on university affairs because the bill wasn’t ready, according to speaker of the senate, Sarah Byrnes.
When the bill was returned to the committee, the vote was split. But when it was time to vote for the bill to be moved back to the senate floor, not enough people voted for it in the committee, and so it died. Ashley Tarchione, ASUN senator for the college of liberal arts, said senators will be rewriting the bill for next semester; however Byrnes said the university is “already going for it.”
Regardless, the senators will be rewriting the bill so that it will be more geared towards protecting students from secondhand smoke rather than discouraging those who do smoke.
“We don’t feel like we are in the position to tell them they can’t do legal behavior because it’s unhealthy,” Tarchione said.
Dec.1-6 was annual AIDS awareness week, and the ASUN Unity department held several events for the week.
“I think overall it went well,” said Desirae Acosta, director of ASUN’s Unity department. “Although I was kind of disappointed in the turn out. It was a matter of timing because it’s right before finals and because of the weather, people didn’t want to come out. But, everyone who attended said they enjoyed it.”
Acosta said the highlight of the week was former playboy calendar girl, Rebekka Armstrong’s speech. She felt it was the highlight of the week because Armstrong didn’t preach about AIDS but effectively got her message out by telling her own personal story.
Acosta said she’s really proud of her department this past semester for keeping up a positive attitude. She said her department learned a lot from events this year and will carry this knowledge into events next semester.
“Keep an open mind to unity events, they are going to be a lot of fun,” Acosta said.
The ASUN center for student engagement will be open for 24 hours on Wednesday, Dec. 11 and Thursday, Dec. 12. Free fruit, candy bars, granola bars and energy drinks will be offered.
Alex Mosher can be reached at email@example.com.