From the Desks of Becca and Sib – First Things First

Author: Rebecca Blais and Sibonay Shewit

Feb Sorta Cover Story Photo"

April 1 — our team’s official first day — is fast approaching, but we have already begun our work. Recently, we sent out the application for the 2017-2018 student government executive staff, and we are eager to assemble our team in the next month. Our priorities for the month of March are negotiating Callisto (an online sexual assault reporting system), tracking Welcome Weekend and First Year of Studies improvements, evaluating the mental health resources data from the JED Foundation and building relationships with student groups.

Callisto is extremely important to us because not only is it a technology to aid in reporting sexual assault, but it is also a prevention mechanism. If implemented, Callisto could reduce sexual assaults by more than half through its match reporting system. Improvements to Welcome Weekend and the First Year of Studies must occur in the next month so that changes can be made before students come to campus in the fall. For example, we are looking specifically at the effectiveness of discussion and the workload in Moreau, as well as first year advising. The JED Foundation is currently working with the McDonald Center for Student WellBeing (McWell) to evaluate current mental health resources on campus and give recommendations on how these resources can be developed. We are preparing to take those results into larger conversations that will lead to action.

We have loved attending club and student group meetings across campus and we will continue to do so throughout our term. Student ideas have been pouring in since campaigning, and we are constantly evaluating how best to advocate for those changes or empower these individuals in their own work. We will integrate this student feedback into our goals for the year. Please reach out to us if you have ideas or would like to get involved!


Becca and Sib