Associated Students of UC San Diego (ASUCSD) hosted an open house at Price Center West Ballroom on April 10, marking the first time in six years that an “Extra Public” senate meeting—a meeting in a more accessible location—has occurred.
The open house was organized by current Campus-Wide Senator David Hickman and was intended to provide means for members of the public to meet and discuss issues with their student representatives and hold them accountable for the promises they have made.
Hickman, who recently won reelection on the FRESH START slate, believes the event was successful, with more people attending the subsequent senate meeting than most other meetings. Usually, the only people in the audience are members of student media and presenters. He estimates that around 75 people attended the open house, with just under 20 members of the public staying for the senate meeting afterwards.
“When we’re on the fourth floor [of Price Center] we just don’t get enough members of the public to speak,” Hickman explained. “These types of events really help with that.”
According to Hickman, the last time such an open house and senate meeting was planned was in 2013. Prior to 2013, these special senate meetings were held every quarter in Week 6, but this practice ended for unknown reasons. Hickman hopes to revive this practice for the upcoming year to help connect the public to their senate.
Accountability was a major talking point in slate platforms in the 2018–19 ASUCSD elections. This was in response to the numerous resignations during the previous administration, including the resignation of the Vice President of Campus Affairs and several other senators. This year, no executive members have resigned and ASUCSD has been working to increase their visibility across the campus through events such as quarterly Library Walk tabling organized by Campus-Wide Senator Kenji Asakura.
Samir Nomani is a Staff Writer for the Triton.