Wednesday night was special, because I covered my first UPUA meeting in 2½ years. I was anticipating, like days of old, the burning of midnight oil and a hefty amount of squabbling. So I was taken aback when first, the meeting started promptly at 8 p.m., and second, when it was finished in just 42 minutes.
The main feature of tonight’s meeting was Vice President Brenden Dooley’s announcement of Steps for State. In April, when Capital Day rolls around, members of the UPUA will walk the 114 miles from State College to Harrisburg for the festivities in the Pennsylvania capital. Five UPUA members at a time will walk in four-hour shifts over a period of three days to reach Harrisburg, and the entire UPUA will walk the final mile to the State Capitol as a show of solidarity before meeting with state legislators. The walk will take place from March 30 to April 1, and the walkers will have chase cars, EMTs on call — the works. The initiative was just recently approved by the university’s Risk Management department, which is no small feat. Organizer Rep. John Wortman said he thought it would be “dead on arrival” but was pleasantly surprised that Penn State was willing to work with the organization.”
In other news, UPUA will no longer have to pay for late-night White Loop service, as Penn State has agreed to absorb those costs, and they will reimburse UPUA for the cost of this year’s service (around $22,000). This project began under then-president and current Board of Trustees candidate Gavin Keirans in 2010, and UPUA has footed the bill ever since.
As has been going on for years now, the Academic Affairs committee is working on compiling an online database of syllabi, and they’re also looking into the possibility of making professors’ SRTE scores public. That’ll be an interesting one. The Assembly also tabled a resolution to co-sponsor State of State’s main event until after the latter talks to UPAC about funding. That bill would have cost UPUA $12,000, but it is likely to be less if it comes up again in the coming weeks.
UPUA committees were also gearing up for State Patty’s Day, with an announcement from the State College Tavern Association about possible bar closures, and UPUA’s involvement it the State Patty’s Day task force is ongoing.
But, well, yeah. It was a pretty uneventful meeting, and I got out in under an hour—enough time to go have a beer and kick back for a hot second. It’s been a long time since the Ragland administration, I suppose.