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StuGov hears cabinet updates, confirms cabinet members, approves winter formal proposal

The Boston University Student Government Office. StuGov heard cabinet updates, confirmed cabinet members and approved a proposal for a Winter Formal.

Boston University heard cabinet updates, confirmed new cabinet members, and approved a proposal to hold a winter formal Feb. 11 in a meeting Monday night.

City Affairs Director Ana Obergfell, a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences, discussed 2022 plans for an “Allston Crawl.”

“The idea behind that is taking students into Allston and doing a walkthrough for different restaurants in Allston,” she said.

Obergfell added the Monday night meeting was her last because will be studying abroad in Paris this Spring. 

Environmental Affairs Director Saahithi Achanta, a sophomore in the College of General Studies, shared updates on a Massachusetts House Resolution Climate Bill the committee had been working on.

“We’ve already written a memo to [Boston Intercollegiate Government] requesting some collective action from all the Boston student governments, and we also have some people from our department that are planning on testifying,” she said.

Other updates included plans for a StuGov TikTok, student-made self-help registration and advising videos and efforts to book the House of Blues for the Spring Festival, an April event highlighting student performers and clubs. 

The meeting continued with the confirmations of two new City Affairs Co-Directors and a new Social Advocacy Director.

CAS senior Niamh Stull and CAS junior Gabriela Ramirez were confirmed as Co-Directors of City Affairs.

Stull spoke about the goals of the department for next semester.

“We’re hoping to reconnect with [Boston Public Schools] and bring back our college conversations,” Stull said, referring to a previous program where college students would advise juniors and seniors in Boston public high schools on the college application process. “We’re also going to bring back some community service days and then a Boston walking guide for the students starting in January.”

Ramirez spoke about connecting to the greater Boston community.

“Being from Boston, I want to make sure that BU students are acquainted with the Boston community and that, as BU students, we’re also able to give back to Boston,” Ramirez said. “We live here for four years, and there’s so much going on and there’s so many ways that we can get involved.”

Stull and Ramirez were both confirmed as City Affairs Co-Directors with 36 votes each.

CAS senior Thara Venu, who served as deputy director of social advocacy last year, shared her experiences from organizing previously.

“I have run a company called The University Blood Initiative, which is a student-led national nonprofit company with a set of chapters and universities and pair them up with local blood donation centers,” she said.

Venu said she is currently working on a Beanpot blood drive in collaboration with other universities playing in the annual Beanpot hockey tournament to be held the first week of February.

Venu was confirmed as Social Advocacy Director with 38 votes. 

The final proposal of the night was a proposal for a winter formal to replace the previously held Student Activities Office-organized Back Bay Ball, last held in 2018.

“The point of this event is to basically bring back the tradition of the Back Bay Ball and unite the student body with the big in-person … events,” said Smaran Ramidi, a CAS freshman, who helped give the presentation. 

The presentation stated the black, white and gold-themed event will take place at the New England Aquarium.

Savannah Majarwitz, a senior in the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, expressed concern over the additional cost of transportation to the aquarium.

“You pay twenty dollars for the cost of the ticket, and then you have to factor in outfit cost on top of that,” Majarwitz said. “Some people might choose to take the T, maybe a bus, maybe Lyft or Uber, but I think if there’s a more clear plan for transportation that would be really helpful.”

CAS senior and Vice President Hessann Farooqi said there were plans to look into subsidized T passes included with event tickets, or to reroute the BU Bus to the event location.

Lauren Kong, a freshman in the Sargent College of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, presented on special elements of the formal including a red carpet, hor d’oeuvres and a non-alcoholic open bar.

Tickets would be sold for approximately $20 through Eventbrite, and students would be required to show green badges and BU IDs to enter.

StuGov approved the proposed winter formal with 34 votes. 

Smaran Ramidi, Spring 2022 Layout and Graphics Editor, was not involved in the writing or editing of this article. 

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