USG approves Sociology and Criminal Justice Club, Rollerblade Group

The Undergraduate Student Government approved the Sociology and Criminal Justice Club and Rollerblade Group at its meeting Sunday night.

The Sociology and Criminal Justice Club was a club before, according to senior Jackie Pavek, club president. It was inactive for a few years, and Pavek said she hopes to get more students involved. She said 21 students attended a preliminary meeting.

“We want to get students on campus in any realm of sociology or criminal justice involved,” Pavek said. The club would try to bring in speakers and go on field trips.

The Rollerblade Group would like to “bring rollerblading enthusiasts together from St. Thomas,” according to its constitution.

Sophomore Allie Schinkowsky told the council the club would allow members to see St. Paul and “be healthy and active.” Schinkowsky said the club would try to find indoor venues or go to the Metrodome to rollerblade during winter months.

Schinkowsky said the money from USG would cover admission fees to skating places, and the club would not need much funding.

Some members initially voted against the club. USG Vice President of Financial Affairs Greg Scharine called for division, which means votes must be tallied. Only five members voted against the club, so it was passed by a majority vote.

Smoke-free initiative committee seeks members

Mike Orth, sophomore class president and head of the smoke-free initiative committee, asked for USG representatives to join the committee. The committee would focus on collecting feedback about the possibility of a smoke-free initiative, researching the effects on students and leading a public relations campaign to inform students about the initiative.

Orth invited USG members to bring their friends. He said he would like to have a “diversity of opinions.” Orth said he would especially like to see both smokers and non-smokers on the committee.

“It’s a hot-topic issue,” he said. “We want a diverse committee.”  Interested students can contact Orth.

USG passes more club allocations, conference request

The Japanese Club, Thespians Unite and the Social Work Club all requested and received $250. Gymnastics received $867.

The Knights of Columbus requested and received $195. The Knights of Columbus is an exclusive group for Catholic men, so USG does not fund its internal costs, Scharine said. Because the Knights of Columbus do hold on-campus programming, USG helps fund that, he said.

The African Nations Student Association requested $2,800 but was only allocated $1,025. Scharine said USG will not fund a conference and barbecue ANSA requested money for because USG does not fund club banquets.

The Pre-Health Professionals Club requested $4,850 but was only allocated $2,300. Scharine said the club inflated the number of members on its budget request. The number was higher than the actual number of students who attend meetings.

USG also approved a conference for St. Paul Outreach for a learning seminar. The cost of the conference is $3,000, and St. Paul Outreach received $1,800.

The money will help pay for the 30 members of the St. Thomas community attending the conference, Scharine said.

USG prepares for university forum Nov. 18

USG discussed plans for the university forum it will be hosting from noon – 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 18, in the O’Shaughnessy Educational Center auditorium. The university forum will feature a panel of administrators who will answer student questions.

“It’s one of those great opportunities to have that space where students can have conversations with the administration,” Dahl said.

USG Vice President of Public Relations Corey Dahl asked council members to submit a question for administrators. He gathered the questions after the meeting and said he will select some of the questions for administrators.

Dahl said he will create an agenda based on these questions and other issues raised at the USG town hall meeting in October. The administrators will get the questions before the forum, but there will be an open mic portion of the forum for students to ask questions.

The meeting is open to the public and refreshments will be served.

USG announces new international winter dance festival in December

Student Diversity and Relations Chair junior Sally Mahmoud announced that USG will hold a new international winter dance at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 1, in Murray-Herrick room 304.

The event will “raise diversity awareness,” Mahmoud said. The dance will feature 10 international dance performances ranging from a Liberian-African dance to salsa.

The performances would be followed by an international dinner and possibly a dance with international music. The dance is still in the planning phases, but would be free to all students.

Theresa Malloy can be reached at

This story was corrected at 1:17 p.m. Nov. 8. The story originally stated that the African American Student Association, which is a part of Hana, received less money than requested. The name of the club is actually the African Nations Student Association, which is not a part of Hana.