ASNMSU approves additional funding for Emergency Fund, establishes support for Africana studies minor


Shane Buchanan

ASNMSU is located in Corbett Center Student Union Building.

At their virtual meeting on Sept. 11, The Associated Students of New Mexico State University Senate passed legislation that supports a new academic minor and funding for the NMSU Pride Band and the ASNMSU Emergency Fund.

Resolution 3: A New Minor for Africana Studies

Arts and Sciences Senator David De La Cruz, Curriculum and Instruction Associate Professor Xeturah Woodley and History Professor Jamie Bronstein presented Resolution 3 to the senate to gain their support of an Africana studies minor for students.

Woodley said there has been student interest for the university to offer this minor.

“We’ve already been offering Africana history here for the last two years. We’ll be offering the first intro the Africana studies course in the spring semester. All of which, at the students request, to create a minor in Africana Studies,” Woodley said.

Education Senator Emily Beker applauded De La Cruz’s efforts for the resolution, stating it was long awaited.

“I think that this is a really great resolution—it’s a big thing we needed for a while. This one of those things that I’m really proud to vote for,” Beker said.

When asked when the minor will go in effect, Xeturah said the minor should be available by fall 2021.

Bill 6: Funding for the Pride of New Mexico

Under Bill 6, ASNMSU will grant the Pride of New Mexico Marching Band funding for new installations and a trailer for transporting band equipment.

Arts and Science Senator Alex Nichols presented the bill with Pride Band Director and Associate Director of Bands Steven Smyth.

Smyth said the need for new installations and a new trailer has grown as the university’s band has expanded and explained that the band needs it now more than ever due to COVID-19.

“With the COVID issue that we’re having along [with] the growth of the band, we need something larger to put our equipment in and where we didn’t have to be indoors so that students didn’t have to go in and out of the same area,” Smyth said.

The bill states the band will receive $6,300 for a 2004 Great Dane Trailer and installation for a side door.

Bill 10: Adding Funds to the ASNMSU Emergency Fund

Under Bill 10, ASNMSU will add $46,500 worth of funding to the ASNMSU Emergency Fund, a fund first established by the student government in spring 2020 to aid eligible students in need of emergency funding. In its beginning, the fund was appropriated $60,000.

Senator Beker, an author of the bill, said that the fund’s balance was standing at approximately $13,000. Senator De La Cruz moved to amend the current proposal, citing Chapter 6 of the ASNMSU Lawbook which states, “the fund cannot exceed to $60,000 at any given time,”

Beker moved to suspend Chapter 6 and claimed Dean of Students Ann Goodman reported the fund is predicted to fall under $5,000 within the next two weeks.

“By the next [time] we’re in senate, this fund will have depleted. We would have to reallocate more funds. Essentially, if we try to stay within this awkward limit because there are so many between senate, we’re just going to be reallocating little amounts here and there to the emergency fund,” Becker stated.

Graduate Senator Ehtesham Shareef was in disagreement with Beker by preferring to not suspend Chapter 6 and eliminate a $60,000 cut-off for the fund. He suggested what Senator of Arts and Sciences David Hernandez said which was adding $46,500 to the fund.

“Eventually, if the emergency fund balance comes down to maybe below $10,000, we can do another bill that brings it up to $60,000,” Shareef said.

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