Senate fails to reach quorum for second week

Katja Benz, Student Government Reporter

The Student Senate held their second unofficial meeting of the semester, with 14 of the minimum of 15 senators needed attending the meeting.

Because this is the second unofficial meeting in a row, due to there being no meeting last week, the consent agenda from the meeting could not be approved. The agenda from the last meeting and this meeting were the same, so this is the second week in a row with the same agenda being unapproved.

The senate saw a presentation on environmental health and sustainability projects. The projects included a garden, a campus farmers market and e-bikes around campus.

This is happening through a course, BIO-3850, which is taught by Robert Colombo, a professor of biological sciences. 

The point of the course is to have students create a project that helps the community.

Jaren Kauzlarich, a senior biological sciences major, and Grayson Hofmann, a senior environmental biology major, are taking the course. Kauzlarich gave the presentation.

The course project in 2019 was creating a garden, which was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Because this course is only offered in the fall, the students could finally pick up the garden this semester.

Kauzlarich said that the garden is going to be by the renewable energy center on 18th St.

Hofmann said that the goal of the course was simple: to take global problems and make them relevant to Eastern’s campus.

“So in environmental health and sustainability we focus on the kind of community and we kind of want to be more friendly to the planet,” Hofmann said. “We think globally, but we want to focus locally. So our goal in the class is to kind of get projects on campus and make better solutions and how we can fix them and just make the community better overall.”

The supplies are supposed to help students. The supplies will go to the EIU Campus Food Pantry, the cafe in Klehm Hall, or the farmer’s market, which will start in August 2023.

Hofmann said that Paul Switzer, another biology professor, is also helping out with the garden by providing guidance for the first few years of the garden. Switzer, at the moment, buys seeds and oversees the garden.

“We’re talking to Dr. Switzer,” Hofmann said. “He said he’s going to help us. He’s gonna kind of cover our budget. He’ll buy the seeds, he’ll tell us when to do it. He’ll basically be an overview for at least the first year or two just to kind of get our feet.”

“We also wanted to focus on what students want,” Hofmann said. “That’s the main goal is to get this produce to students, because fresh produce is very hard to get for students. So in the survey we put what produce would you like to see on campus, and we based the list that we had based on what students want. So we’ll bring that up to Dr. Switzer. If it’s possible, we’ll include that in the garden.”

There would be a $5 green fee added for all students, which helps pay for supplies of the garden, according to the presentation.


Katja Benz can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].