SGA 10/27 meeting recap: DACA, Swipes for Seahawks and COVID-19


Lauren Wessell

The Student Government Association (SGA) meets every Tuesday from 6:30 pm to 8 pm.

Veronica Wernicke, News Editor

During their weekly meeting, the Student Government Association’s (SGA) swore in and filled in their final freshman class senator. By a vote of 37 yays, zero nos and one abstention, Elizabeth Horton was approved to join the Senate. 

Following Horton’s swearing-in, they moved right into their weekly reports.

Matt Talone, SGA’s President, began his report with an update that the Black Student Action Group, the Student Affairs Division group which is addressing the list of institutional needs presented by the Coalition of Black Student Leaders, will be getting their own webpage Student Affairs website. This is to help better communicate what they are doing and share any relevant updates. 

Talone also said that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) issue brought up at last week’s meeting is being looked into and he recently met with Vice-Chancellor Miles Lackey to discuss it. 

“Right now one of the big things they’re looking into is to see if the university has any discretion to determine residency for the students,” Talone said. “But [Lackey’s] also working with Fred Holding who’s the head of financial aid to try to connect with RDS which is the residency determination service to see if that’s something we can get changed through them.”

Brianna Ramirez, SGA’s Director of Diversity and Inclusion reminded and encouraged everyone to sign and share their pledge to not culturally appropriate during Halloween. She also offered an update regarding work on the LatinX Resource Book. Her committee has already created a long list of locally owned Hispanic or LatinX businesses. 

They are also meeting soon with Dr. Edelmira Segovia, the Director of Centro Hispano, to put together a list of all the Hispanic or LatinX faculty and staff. Ramierez said their goal is to have the book complete and available by Jan.   

Jake Linker, SGA’s Student Services Chair, explained and reminded students to opt into the new two-factor authentication for their school email and password. Emails have already been sent out by the Information Technology Services. 

“By Nov. 10 all students are required to move to it,” Linker said. “Transitioning to this program increases security, and it’s also a big step towards having a 365-day password. Instead of having to change your password every 90 days. They use zoom sessions if you do need help on that.”

In addition, Linker mentioned that UNCW is collaborating with the New Hanover County Health Department to host free drive through testing for the coronavirus (COVID-19). The testing is currently open and will be available through Nov. 24.

It is also open to students and Wilmington residents as well. Tests are self-administered and will be available 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. throughout this period. Testing is located in the parking lot at the corner of Hurst Drive and Hamilton Drive and registration is required. 

Lastly, Linker gave an update on the Swipes for Seahawks program that he and Robby Fensom, SGA’s Chief of Staff, have been working on.

“Swipe for Seahawks is a meal swipe donation program to provide meal swipes to students that may be experiencing food insecurity,” Linker said. “I’ve been working with and meeting with Robby about getting the program implemented and finalized and kind of clarifying all the different details. We are currently working on promotional materials such as flyers and a video series. We are really excited and are looking forward to getting it started as soon as we can. If we can somehow get it started this semester that’d be great but we’re definitely looking at getting it started next semester.”

SGA meetings every Tuesday from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. via Zoom and anyone is welcome to attend.