Update from the EMU Student Body Vice President

Colton Ray

Hello everyone! My name is Colton Ray, and I was elected to the position of EMU Student Body Vice President for our Student Government on October 5th, 2020. Since then, Student Body President Luis Romero and I have been tasked with fitting a normally three-month-long transition period into a three-week timespan due to the pandemic and the elections being delayed. It has been difficult, but we were able to attend several meetings, hold interviews and hire our new executive board*. We also set up lines of communication and training for student senators, and hosted our first general meeting on October 20th and committee meetings on October 27th.

I have also been working on an EMU Student Resource guide that includes options for students seeking healthcare, housing, childcare, and alternatives to calling the police. So far we have been advocating for waiving online fees for classes during the Winter semester, increasing on-campus mental health funding, and we intend on pushing for much more.

We are looking to invite members of the EMU and/or Ypsilanti community to speak during one of our general senate meetings on issues such as local gentrification (and the impact of students living off-campus), and the policing of the Ypsilanti community by EMU Police. Please contact me at Colton225@protonmail.com if you or anyone you know is interested in doing so!

We are also working towards expanding the Student Emergency Fund that was established last year for students struggling to pay for rent, food, or other essential spending so that the funds can cover more expenses and will be easier to access. We will be presenting to the Board of Regents about the need for greater low-barrier financial aid to students—particularly for Black and LGBTQ+ students facing rising tuition, housing, food, and transportation costs.

If you’re an EMU student who is looking to join us in these efforts or to pursue other goals, please consider becoming a senator or a delegate for an organization who is in good standing! You can find out more by either contacting myself, or checking out the Student Government website here.

*The new executive board consists of our Business and Finance Director Myles Campbell who manages student organization allocations, Student Services Director Daezja Giles who puts on engaging programs and connect students to University and local resources, Director of Diversity and Community Outreach Donacle Clemons who coordinates between student activists/orgs and higher adminsitration, Director of Media Tiana Stewart who manages and updates our website and social media outreach, Speaker of the Senate Auryon Azar who sets senator requirements and provides guidance on resolution drafting, and Parliamentarian Tyler Kochman who manages decorum and Roberts Rules of Order.