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UPUA Elects New Diversity Committee Chair Following Contentious Vote

The 17th Assembly of the University Park Undergraduate Association (UPUA) convened in the HUB Wednesday night. The meeting began with special presentations from McQuillin Murphy and Nick Cedeño, who advertised Penn State’s Office of Development & Alumni Relations, and Anna Sulecki, a representative for the Performing Arts Council.

President Sydney Gibbard then delivered her report in which she criticized the lack of emergency medical services at the protest of the October 24 Uncensored America event. She updated representatives on the ongoing investigation into the four individuals involved in pepper spraying protestors. Vice President Carter Gangl and several representatives delivered shorter reports before the assembly moved on to old business. 

Old Business

The assembly’s order of old business was electing a new chair of the ad hoc committee on internal diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. 

The two candidates, Giani Clarke, the chair of the student life committee, and Haley Parker, the vice chair of governmental affairs in the Latino Caucus, delivered speeches before the assembly went to vote.

Neither candidate cleared the threshold needed to win in the initial vote. After a second vote also failed, Vice President Gangl reopened the floor for discussion. After a debate, Clarke won the third vote and the election. 

New Business

The assembly’s first order of new business was unanimously passing Bill #19-17, establishing a “Stressed For Finals?” campaign. This will provide funding for a social media campaign that aims to advertise finals week-related Faculty Senate policies.

Next, the assembly passed Bill #20-17, purchasing Penn State’s Post-Landfill Action Network membership (PLAN) in a unanimous vote. This will “explore improving systemic waste management.”

Finally, the assembly passed Bill #21-17, providing funding for a first-annual Tri-Caucus Friendsgiving between the Black, Latino, and APIDA Caucuses.

After reports from the Chief of Staff and Speaker of the Assembly, the Assembly concluded the meeting.

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About the Author

Adam Babetski

Adam Babetski is a senior double majoring in communications and medieval history. He's from the only part of Virginia without tractors and southern accents, except Richmond (reportedly). You can follow him on Twitter @AdamBabetski for hot takes about sports. For serious inquiries, email [email protected]

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