Public Comment

New Community Based Research Program in the Works

Dr. Scott Mensing of the Office of Undergraduate Research spoke to the senators about the success of the fledgling International Undergraduate Research Experience and other undergraduate research proposals.

Last session, ASUN provided $10,000 in scholarships for the program, which connected undergraduates at UNR with mentors in foreign countries to do research. This past summer was the first year for the program and focused on providing opportunities for STEM fields, which are often under-represented in many study-abroad programs, said Mensing. After the success of the first year of the program, Mensing and the Undergraduate Research Board are hoping to increase awareness of the opportunity and raise the number of applicants and awards.

Mensing is currently working with the City of Reno to set up Community Based Undergraduate Research. This new program would fund students to research a problem that is currently affecting the Reno community. This spring, Mensing is launching a pilot project with two $1,500 awards available and asked the senate to consider allocating $7,500 in next year’s budget, matched by the research center, to fund 10 community-based research positions.

Legislation

College of Engineering senate seat filled

The senate debated extensively over an act to amend the club support funding policies involving the 24-hour proxy rule as well as the ability of ASUN officials to act as a proxy in a funding hearing. The 24- hour proxy rule is currently written to require a club to provide the names of a proxy to attend a funding hearing in the case that the president, vice president or treasurer of a club is not available. In the first part of this act, the 24- hour rule would be removed, allowing clubs to submit a proxy up until the end of the funding hearing meeting.

The majority of the senate was in approval of the first part of this amendment to retract the 24-hour rule.

The second part of this act would bar ASUN officials from presenting or acting as a proxy at a club funding hearing. This change to the manual is in an effort to enhance the visibility of all interactions between the ASUN government and clubs on campus, eliminate potential bias, and enhance public perception of ASUN as a whole.

After a lengthy discussion, the act was tabled indefinitely after the senate realized no amendments could legally be made because they were only looking at individual sections of the club manual.

Emily Fisher can be reached at efisher@sagebrush.unr.edu and on Twitter @NevadaSagebrush.