Previously on SGA: Everything but the kitchen sink.

The following covers the meeting on August 24.


All Student Government Association (SGA) meetings are open to the public. 13 first-year students were in attendance at the first meeting of the school year.

Climate Check:

Sophomore Senator Ella Charbonnet began climate check with an update on the ice cream machine in Mabee Dining Hall, which is again out of order. Senator Charbonnet brought up the possibility of buying a new machine due to the number of repairs that have been necessary. At the end of the meeting, Senator Charbonnet received an email from Charles Robles, food service director, informing her that the ice cream machine is being repaired and should be fixed by next week. Robles also noted in his email that it would cost $10,000 to replace the machine.

Senator Charbonnet also gave an update on the feminine hygiene product initiative. The next goal of the initiative is to install dispensing machines with the SGA logo in bathrooms. President Danny Nguyen explained that facilities services will not allow them to install wall-mounted machines, so the dispensers must be able to sit on a countertop. The current goal is to place dispensing machines in Coates Library, Coates Student Center and Mabee; bathrooms in other buildings will continue to have baskets of products. President Nguyen also said that facilities services will not distribute feminine products to bathrooms due to staff limitations; therefore, a volunteer committee will be established for distribution. Junior Senator Danae Barkocy suggested reaching out to student workers who work in each building to monitor the supply of feminine products.

Nadoa Moore, a first-year student, brought forward a concern about a roach “the size of a dog” she saw outside on campus. President Nguyen recommended reaching out to facilities services for any indoor roach sightings, but noted that nothing can be done about roaches seen outside.

Legislative Relations Chair Dario Leal brought forth a concern about students who live in Dick and Peggy Prassel Hall parking in Lot Y, located by Camille Lightner Hall, rather than the Prassel Parking Garage. Leal suggested stickers that would indicate which lot a student needs to use for overnight parking. President Nguyen advised Legislative Relations Chair Leal to email Jim Baker, senior director of facilities services, and Bret Biance, director of the residential life office. Advisor Jamie Thompson recommended contacting the Trinity University police department (TUPD) since they manage on-campus parking.

Sophomore Senator Allison Waters raised a concern brought by sophomore students that the printer on the third floor of Bruce Thomas Hall is broken. Senator Waters said that this is the only printer in the sophomore dorms and asked about fixing the printer and the possibility of installing a printer in Prassel. Adviser Thompson advised Senator Waters to contact Bruce Bravo, senior director of conferences and auxiliary services, and the Tiger Card Office.

Junior Senator Nadesh Vaithianathan reiterated the parking issue raised by Legislative Relations Chair Leal and asked about student access to the off-campus parking lot by Trinity Baptist Church as a potential parking space for South Hall and North Hall residents. President Nguyen told Vaithianathan that students should not park there, as the only parking partnership the university has is with SAISD for Alamo Stadium.

Sophomore Senator Ani Siva informed the Senate that he had a “laundry list” of student concerns he hoped to address.

Senator Siva brought forth a concern by a Prassel resident about a dead bat found inside of their dorm after move-in. Facilities Services disposed of the bat. According to Senator Siva, the student in question noted that their balcony door had never been opened and that they felt as though their concern had been brushed off. Senator Siva noted that this instance was most likely a one-off, but asked who should be connected for future reference. Adviser Thompson advised students to make facility requests with as much detail as possible for documentation purposes. President Nguyen noted that Residential Life is aware of the issue, according to some resident assistants (RAs).

Senator Siva shared several concerns about campus accessibility brought forth by a first-year wheelchair user. According to the student, some of the door access push buttons on campus do not work, it is difficult to get to upper campus in a wheelchair and physical textbooks are difficult to transport when digital options are not available. President Nguyen said the ramp which will connect lower and upper campus is currently under construction and current wheelchair-accessible routes from lower to upper campus are the ramp behind the outdoor swimming pool** and the elevator in Murchison Hall (Murchison). Nguyen said that the affordable textbook initiative which will be tackled later down the line will potentially focus on digital textbook options. Advisor Thompson recommended that students with accessibility concerns contact Spencer Scruggs, director for student accessibility services (SAS), who will raise concerns on the student’s behalf, and noted that the student in question is already in contact with Scruggs. Advisor Thompson also noted that any student can make a facilities report and encouraged students to report any door access push buttons that do not work.

Senator Siva inquired if Tiger Tracks is available during the day. Advisor Thompson said that it is, and the escort service can be requested through the app or by calling the 210-999-7070 phone line. Senator Siva suggested a potential partnership between TUPD and SAS to give students easier access to this service. President Nguyen noted that SAS has wanted to partner with SGA and advised Siva to pass the TUPD partnership idea by Scruggs.

Senator Barkocy noted that many buildings don’t even have door access push buttons. Senator Siva noted that the wheelchair-accessible routing is inconvenient and out of the way. Senator Charbonnet noted that the steep incline on the way to Prassel would be difficult for wheelchair users.

Sophomore Senator Harrison Tinker noted that Trinity’s official accessibility map has not been updated in two years and does not include Dicke Hall or current construction sites. Advisor Thompson recommended that Tinker reach out to the office of strategic communications and marketing (SCM) and Scruggs.

Senator Siva raised concerns about Mabee and P.O.D. hours not being posted, resulting in the P.O.D. being closed without explanation and many first-year students caught unaware. President Nguyen said that SGA would be eating in Mabee after the meeting and that these concerns could be brought to Robles’ attention then.

Senator Siva announced that Tigers for Ethical Dining (formerly Tigers Against Aramark) is currently working with the administration to negotiate a contract with a new food provider and to create a student board to oversee the process. President Nguyen noted that Vice President Donya Ahmadi and Senator Siva are on the board and a point of contact for anyone interested in serving on the board.

Senator Tinker voiced concerns about dining service hours, stating that the hours are hard to find. Senator Tinker shared a master list spreadsheet of campus dining hours that he updates weekly ( Advisor Thompson recommended that Senator Tinker reach out to Kathryn Camacho, who is in charge of posting on dining services’ social media platforms.

Senator Vaithianathan raised a concern about unmarked prices in the P.O.D. President Nguyen stated that he had discussed this issue with Robles and that a third-party operation is in charge of the price tags. Senator Tinker noted that he tabled this issue last year and emailed back and forth with Aramark in an attempt to create a master list for students with all the prices for the P.O.D. listed and was told that the prices were private information that could not be disclosed. Senator Tinker also mentioned that students last year noticed that they were being charged different prices than the price listed on the price tag.

President Nguyen brought up that dining services is opening a digital food pantry. Advisor Thompson added on, saying that students can donate extra points on their meal plan to students in need and that students in need can receive H-E-B gift cards by filling out a request form.

Senator Siva inquired about whether the feminine hygiene product initiative would continue to only offer tampons. Senator Charbonnet said that the plan is to provide both pads and tampons and asked if the dispensing machines would have different sizes available. President Nguyen redirected those questions to Vice President Ahmadi.

Senator Siva raised concerns brought forth by first-year students not being able to log into Tiger Care (Trinity’s new telehealth service for students) and students being unable to call the grief support hotline. Advisor Thompson requested more information on the grief support hotline issue. Advisor Thompson said that, in order to access Tiger Care for free, students will need to use two codes. The first code is a service code (ALC) that gains the student access, and the second code is a coupon (ALCTRINITY22) that makes the service free. Legislative Relations Chair Leal also suggested that students seeking grief support look into the on-campus grief peer support group.

Senator Siva raised a concern about the lack of bottle-filling stations in C. W. Miller Hall and Calvert Hall. President Nguyen acknowledged that the water bottle filling stations were initially an SGA initiative. Advisor Thompson noted that the water bottle filling stations in the new buildings on campus were placed there by facilities services and advised asking facilities services to support the addition of water bottle filling stations to Calvert and Miller.

Senator Tinker noted that the university has resource maps online with information about printer locations and vending machine locations. He noted that these maps are sometimes out of date and suggested the possibility of a map of water bottle filling stations. Advisor Thompson recommended that Tinker include these concerns in his email to SCM and Scruggs.

Senior Senator Ameer Mustafa moved to save the last three items on Senator Siva’s climate checklist for the next meeting. Senator Charbonnet seconded the motion.

Ashleigh Reese, a first-year student, raised a concern about students in the Successful Life FYE Summer Bridge Program getting food poisoning from eating at Mabee. Legislative Relations Chair Leal revealed that he also got food poisoning in the past after eating at Mabee. Advisor Thompson told Reese that any students who experience food poisoning should submit a detailed report to dining services as soon as possible. President Nguyen added that reports and complaints should be directed to Robles ([email protected]).

Senator Barkocy suggested that SGA should encourage voter participation in the midterm elections and suggested an initiative to help students carpool to polling stations. Advisor Thompson said that she chairs the voting engagement task force and plans to partner with MOVETexas on Voter Registration Day on Sept. 28.

Senator Vaithianathan closed the climate check with a concern about student access to Tiger Hub. Advisor Thompson stated that every dorm on campus should have received a magnet with a QR code that grants them access to Tiger Hub and that the resource guide is updated every Tuesday and Thursday.

Special Committees:

President Nguyen introduced the First-Year Election Committee. Senator Siva, Senator Charbonnet, Senator Tinker and Senator Barkocy volunteered to serve on the First-Year Election Committee.

President Nguyen also introduced the Free Food Friday Committee and announced the budget for this committee will be determined by President Nguyen and Vice President Ahmadi. Senator Slentz, Senator Charbonnet, Senator Barkocy and Legislative Relations Chair Leal volunteered to serve on the committee.

Vice President Ahmadi announced that the first finance committee meeting for requests less than $1,500 will occur on Sept. 6, and the first Senate funding meeting for requests over $1,500 will be held on Sept. 7.

President Nguyen announced the possibility of collaborating with the SGA organizations at other universities like St. Mary’s University and the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA).