Senate discusses further action to facilitate conversation on Title IX


Nathan Richards/Daily Senior Staffer

Chief Marketing Officer Mary Baglivo addresses Associated Student Government Wednesday night. Baglivo outlined her vision on how to establish the NU brand in her presentation.

Rebecca Savransky, Campus Editor

Members of the Associated Student Government presented Wednesday future steps to facilitate student discussion on Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 in an update on previously passed legislation.

In the initial piece of legislation, passed on April 9, a three-week deadline was implemented for those involved to report back to Senate with actions they plan to take to improve resources for sexual assault victims and create more effective prevention methods.

(ASG passes legislation proposing action toward sexual assault prevention)

Members involved in the effort said they had reached out to the heads of several groups including Sexual Health and Assault Peer Educators, Men Against Rape and Sexual Assault and students who participated in the Title IX protests over the past few months, among others. Chris Harlow, ASG student life vice president, said the team has spoken to the administration and is in the process of setting up an initial meeting with students to outline further actions.

“Right now, the administration has a Title IX Committee,” Harlow said. “This will kind of be a committee for students working independently away from administration just to kind of serve as a community forum.”

Harlow said they will report back to Senate to discuss the next steps and give further information.

Chief marketing officer Mary Baglivo also spoke to ASG about her efforts to better market the University through developing a “compelling and cohesive” overarching idea. Baglivo said the University is outperforming its ranking.

“In many ways, the performance of the product, if you will, was ahead of its reputation,” she said. “I’m trying to work on the overall Northwestern brand.”

The objectives for her project include improving the University’s reputation, increasing alumni participation rates and increasing student satisfaction rates, which she said was the most “pivotal” goal.

“We are really operating in a very, very, very strong position so all our rankings on almost anything that I’ve got my hands on are very good but, you know, there’s always room for improvement,” Baglivo said.

She said the University needs to give greater attention to both defining and optimizing its brand. Her position will involve the need for qualitative and quantitative research in an effort to analyze what individuals believe about the University and to develop plans for how to improve its overall brand.

The ASG operating budget was also discussed, with the addition of several new funds created in an effort to cater to the student body. Members of the budget committee proposed adding subsidies for students to pay for NU sponsored or hosted events, stipends for students leaders with the financial need and rewards for students groups that take measures to become more environmentally sustainable. Most of the budget increases stemmed from grants and subsidies that would be given to students and student groups.

The operating budget also included the addition of a new fund of $25,000, called “Wild Ideas Fund,” which would combine the money from both the 10K Initiative and the Senate Project Pool. This new fund would give students the opportunity to request funds and Senate would have the option to send the requests received to the student body to be voted on campus-wide or to vote on them at the meeting, similar to how the project pool currently works.

Senate will vote on the proposed operating budget in two weeks.

Senate also lent their support to the “Bottled Water-Free Northwestern” initiative proposed last week which asks that the University completely eliminate the sale of bottled water in all on-campus locations by April 2015.

(Senate discusses lending support to eliminating bottled water use on campus, confirms executive board positions)

The initiative was proposed by members of Pura Playa, a project focused on plastic waste reduction run under Engineers for a Sustainable World. Members of the group presented a plan with steps they will take to implement the proposal. Students involved said they will educate students and host awareness events, gather student support, meet with administrators and begin contract negotiations with the end goal of being bottled water free by April 2015. 

ASG amended the legislation to include the addition of a clause requesting the University also replace all old water fountains with new water bottle refilling stations within the same time frame. 

Several other students requested project pool money to fund their group’s activities and goals for the quarter. Mayfest representatives asked for money to fund specific pieces of art to be displayed at Dillo Day. They highlighted four major components they hoped to add for this year’s event which includes large wooden letters that say “Dillo,” and other interactive boards.

Students also requested money to begin a pre-medical peer mentoring program on campus and to fund sound and lighting for the South Asian Student Alliance Spring Concert, among others.

These requests will be voted on at next week’s ASG meeting on May 7.

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Twitter: @beccasavransky