GUSA Roundup: Georgetown Day, frats, and taking on sexual assault…again

The 2012-2013 term came to an end on Sunday afternoon, as GUSA held its last meeting for the year. GUSA’s members reflected on the success of Georgetown Day and gave thank yous and fond farewells in anticipation for the three long, lonesome months for which all Georgetown students, but mostly GUSA, will be deprived of GUSA’s presence. In addition, they passed bills concerning group advocacy and ways to further expand sexual assault education.

Georgetown Day was sexy and GUSA knows it

GUSA took particular pride in the great success of Georgetown Day this year, and views it as the proper way to facilitate on-campus event-planning with the administration. 

“Last year we had an anonymous student campaign to make sure that the administration didn’t barricade Healy Lawn, and that went down to the wire, in terms of what rights we would and would not have,” Student Life Committee Chair Ben Weiss (COL ’15) said. “Compare that to this year, when we had a lot of really great administrative-student conversations and deliberations. I think we can look to that as a model going forward on how we can all work together.”

Our natural-bro rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of pong

The first bill to be introduced  was “an act to create a working group to address the needs of student groups lacking access to benefits,” and will work towards establishing closer ties between GUSA and student groups which are not officially recognized by the University or choose not to receive benefits from the University.

“The impetus for this bill was a discussion regarding the right of students to freely associate with all groups that represent their interests,” said Senator Josh Shinbrot (COL ’16), who introduced the bill. “As an elected representation of the student body at Georgetown, we need to represent all Georgetown students and all of the groups that they associate with.”

The bill’s most significant assistance to these groups will be in the form of easing the process for space reservation and scheduling. The groups that will benefit include fraternities and sororities and all-male or all-female performance groups, as well as some groups that are simply not recognized by the University, such as H*yas for Choice.

Senator Robert Shepherd (COL ’15) raised concerns over this being viewed as “the Frat Bill” and reminded the other members of GUSA that the bill includes many more groups than just the fraternities and sororities.

“George is partial to Greek life,” joked GUSA President Nate Tisa (SFS ’14), after Speaker George Spyropoulos reiterated Shepherd’s point.

The bill passed unanimously.

Fight for sexual assault education not NSOver

Though GUSA tried and ultimately failed to push the administration to make a sexual assault workshop a mandatory part of next year’s NSO, GUSA continues to advocate for sexual assault policy reform. GUSA unanimously passed “a resolution concerning sexual assault education in residence halls.”

The resolution aims to include sexual assault policy at Georgetown as a topic of discussion between RAs and their residents during the year’s first residence hall meeting, in addition to training RAs on how to respond in the advent of a reported sexual assault.

Senator Jimmy Ramirez (COL ’15) introduced the bill. “The whole point is to bring up the campus policy on sexual assault and discussing it more in depth, and also providing resources,” he said. “Residence Life doesn’t currently do this. Currently the first floor meetings just discuss alcohol policy and things of that nature.”

Senator Lawrence Slusky (COL ’13) asked whether consideration had been given to the possibility of the sexual assault discussion being a trigger for some students. Ramirez responded that, while this is a valid concern, silence on the issue is not the proper answer, and great attention will be paid to the wording of sexual assault education materials.

9 Comments on “GUSA Roundup: Georgetown Day, frats, and taking on sexual assault…again

  1. Let me point out the elephant in the room: if GUSA wants to prevent sexual assault, increasing the presence of frats on campus is not the way to go.

  2. GUSA’s contradicting itself? WHAT? WHAT KIND OF WORLD IS THIS?!?!?

  3. How many workshops do I need to go through before I can actually be a student at Georgetown? First I have to learn how to not be racist, then I have to take an online course on why alcohol is bad mmkay, then I have to take an online course on how not to cheat, so now I need to have a class on how not to be a rapist? We’re getting in a little heavy.

  4. Babs, I very much disagree with your statement. I am in a fraternity at Georgetown and all of the gentlemen who we associate with are of the highest caliber. I think fraternities provide a unique source of guidance and structure to a man’s life which helps guide him down an honorable past. Fraternity men are upstanding, thoughtful, and positive members of the community. To suggest that affiliation with a fraternity somehow makes one more likely to sexually assault women is absurd and offensive.

  5. Yes I agree. We should stop inconveniencing rapists with workshops cus a better alternative would be inconveniencing victims of rape with, well, rape.

  6. I’ve never understood why GUSA thinks Georgetown needs “frats.” A group of people who share a professional interest, have alumni networking, and enjoy partying together?

    Like, a student group?

    Oh but somehow a non-SAC group not being able to go to the SAC fair is a violation free speech because GUSA always has ITS priorities straight.

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