University News

UCS greenlights new committee

Student Wellness committee to replace Admissions, Student Services committee in fall 2016

Staff Writer
Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Student Wellness committee, a committee to begin service in fall 2016, will handle matters related to Counseling and Psychological Services, Student and Employee Accessibility Services, Title IX policy and Health Services.

The Undergraduate Council of Students unanimously approved a resolution that will create a new committee called the Student Wellness committee for the 2016-17 school year at its general body meeting Wednesday.

The committee will oversee UCS affairs relating to Counseling and Psychological Services, Student and Employee Accessibility Services, Health Services and Title IX policy, according to the draft resolution submitted for the general body vote.

The Student Wellness committee will replace the Admissions and Student Services committee. Matters not related to student wellness that currently fall within the jurisdiction of Admissions and Student Services will be divided among the remaining committees once Admissions and Student Services is replaced.

For example, issues related to student services, such as the mailroom and Brown IDs, will move to the Campus Life committee, and admissions-related responsibilities will move to the renamed Academic Affairs committee, formerly known as Academic and Administrative Affairs.

UCS President Sazzy Gourley ’16 cited the council’s increasing work in this area over the past three years as the reason for the change. He said that the admissions component of the committee was originally conceived as a result of the University’s non-need blind admissions policy for domestic students, which has since been reversed.

“We felt it would be effective to have a Student Wellness Committee so that there are more entry points for students to work on projects in those areas,” Gourley said.

Gourley also noted the overlap between the work of Admissions and Student Services and that of the other committees as a reason for the change. “It can be nebulous where Student Services ends and Campus Life begins,” he said.

Other approved changes to UCS internal structure include the addition of a technology director to the Management Board. This director will be in charge of overseeing the Bear Bucks service, printing, student WiFi and other matters formerly under the domain of Admissions and Student Services.

Committee chairs will also have the opportunity to select vice-chairs. “This will give people a chance to become more deeply involved in the process, and will make sure that chairs have the support they need,” said UCS Vice President Alana Bhatla ’16.

A final change allows for an amendment process to the UCS Code and grants the parliamentarian, currently Austin Lessin ’19, a Herald sales associate, authorization to make corrections and technical changes, according to the draft resolution.

UCS also approved a resolution enabling the appointment of 38 undergraduates to 19 University committees, culminating the appointments process that solicited a pool of 155 applications from 110 students.

“This year, we’ve been building strong relationships with the student appointees to advocate for specific changes,” Gourley said. “It’s encouraging to see that some of that outreach has led to this increase in applications.”

Lastly, the council categorized several student groups. Brown University Animal Assisted Therapy, Students for Responsible Policies in Yemen, Brown/RISD Lovecraft & Welcome to Night Vale Fan Club, Brown Innovation for Health, Jews of Mixed Identity and Sabrosura: Brown Latin Band were approved as Category One groups; Bridge to a Brighter Future Brown Chapter, Save the Children and Brown University’s Mantanya’s Hope Club were approved as Category S groups, and the Brown University Pre-Veterinary Organization was approved as a Category Two group.

UCS will host the annual State of Brown address by President Christina Paxson P’19 next Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the Building for Environmental Research and Teaching 130. The event will include a lengthy Q&A session open to the entire student body.

Correction: A previous version of this article referred to the new committee formed by UCS as the Student Wellness Board. In fact, it is called the Student Wellness committee. The Herald regrets the error.