By Tess Harmon
TCU Senate elects new Allocations Board member, discusses Class of 2024 prom
The Tufts Community Union (TCU) Senate held internal elections for an open position on the Allocations Board (ALBO) and heard updates on a potential new meal swipe donation program in a virtual meeting on Sunday night.
TCU President Amma Agyei opened the meeting by introducing Ethan Walsey, a technician for the Elections Commission who oversaw the election for the ALBO position.
Before nominations began, TCU Treasurer Elizabeth Hom explained the responsibilities of an ALBO member, which include working with 20–30 student organizations to finalize their individual annual budgets during the spring budgeting season, as well as meeting with the leaders of student organizations who request supplementary funding from the TCU Senate. The money for TCU-supported organizations’ budgets and supplementary funding requests comes from the activity fee that undergraduate students pay each year.
Walsey, a sophomore, opened the floor for nominations to the ALBO position. Eight senators were nominated and two — Enrique Rodriguez and Eva Sheedy — accepted the nomination.
Each nominee gave a one-minute speech, explaining why they were interested in joining ALBO.
“I ran [for TCU Senate] saying that I would advocate for my people and I feel that Allocations Board is a good way to do so because they are a big part in allocating funds, and I want to make sure that it is done in an equitable and responsible way,” Rodriguez, a junior, said.
Walsey then opened a question and answer session, in which the candidates were asked about their abilities to withhold bias from ALBO decisions, their experiences cooperating with people of different backgrounds and their plans for overcoming challenges this semester.
“I would really try and picture everything clubs are doing in the context of how it contributes to the Tufts community, even if it’s something I’m not agreeing with,” Sheedy, a freshman, said.
While the senators voted on their choice for the open ALBO seat, TCU Vice President Tim Leong opened the floor for updates from the committee chairs. Services Committee Chair Arielle Galinsky announced that her committee is partnering with the meal donation program Jumbo Swipes to advocate for Tufts Dining to donate students’ unused meal swipes to food pantries in Medford and Somerville at the end of the semester or even establish an on-campus food pantry.
Galinsky, a sophomore, added that the Services Committee’s Menstrual Product Project will be restarting soon and gave an update on the Class of 2024 Prom. Last semester, TCU Senate voted to allocate $137,000 toward the event and tentatively scheduled it for March 2022. Galinsky said that prom may or may not happen given unpredictable COVID-19 conditions.
Next, Hom, a senior, explained that budgeting season has begun, meaning all TCU-supported student organizations must send their treasurers to a mandatory budget training on Feb. 1 or Feb. 3.
TCU Diversity Officer Jaden Pena, a junior, announced that TCU Senate will create a new community senator position this semester in response to Tufts’ creation of a seventh identity center for students who identify as Indigenous or Native American.
By the end of the meeting, the votes from the ALBO elections were tallied and Walsey announced Enrique Rodriguez as the newest member of ALBO.