Congressman Thompson And Student Trustee Luke Metaxas Highlight UPUA Meeting

Perhaps it is because the year is young, but UPUA’s tenth assembly is an efficient group. On a night with little legislation on the agenda, the weekly meeting was highlighted by two special presentations: the first by United States Congressman Glenn Thompson, and the second by student-elected student trustee Luke Metaxas

With no students present to speak during the open forum, the meeting began with Congressman Thompson’s presentation. A Penn State alumnus and representative of Pennsylvania’s 5th Congressional District, the Congressman spoke primarily on the topics of mental health and making higher education more affordable.

“When I was in school, we had trimesters. What I paid for a trimester, you pay for a book today,” he said. Thompson mentioned a proposal he is working on to offer incentives to students who work to get their degree done in under four years. Thompson hopes to include policies such as taking away all loans incurred during a student’s first year if they are able to finish their degree in three and a half years in his legislation.

Student-selected student trustee, Luke Metaxas, delivered the second special presentation He focused on how he would like to be a strong representative of the student body on the Board of Trustees. “Being on campus and listening is key,” Metaxas said. “I’m here to observe, vote, take in as much as I can, and be there for everyone as best as I can.”

Noting his position as the first ever student-selected student trustee, Metaxas made a point to thank UPUA for working to have such a student representative present on the board.

In her report, President Emily McDonald noted a number of collaborations between UPUA and other organizations, specifically work being done to create a front between state-related schools. McDonald also said that, come the end of Allie Goldstein’s term on the Board of Trustees, the assembly should encourage the board to elect another student.

Vice President Terry Ford’s weekly report was also straightforward. He simply updated the assembly on a collaboration with the borough to allow fraternities to work off nuisance property points with community service. Ford said meetings with the borough and the IFC furthered the plan since last week, but there is still some concern as to how the hours can best be organized and recorded.

The remainder of the meeting was business as usual, it seemed. In new business, Veronica Joyce was confirmed as the Director of Student Conduct Advisors with a vote of 29-1-1. President McDonald commended Joyce on her work and many ideas going forward to better help the student body.

In his report, Chief Justice Joe Arias noted how the Judicial Board has been working with the parking ticket appeals board. Justice Arias hopes to provide a student voice to advocate for (or against) students who chose to fight a parking ticket.

The meeting was adjourned after 86, um, “short” minutes.

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Lexi Shimkonis

Lexi is an editor-turned-staff writer who can often be found at either Irving's or the Phyrst (with the chances she'll have her backpack being the same). Lexi is a senior hailing from Spring City, PA (kind of) and studying Civil Engineering. Please email questions and/or pleas for an Instagram caption to [email protected], or for a more intimate bond, follow her on Twitter @lexshimko.

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