On Wednesday, Bowdoin Student Government (BSG) representatives discussed and ultimately declined to take an official stance on divesting the endowment of fossil fuels. BSG intends to hear from a representative of the administration before issuing a statement. Peter Nauffts ’15 and Ben Richmond ’13, of Bowdoin’s Climate Action Group, attended the meeting to request that BSG make an official statement calling for the College to investigate divestment. However, after discussion, BSG decided to refrain from making a proposal until it had more information on the issue.
Nauffts and Richmond both advocated strongly for an official statement concerning divestment, especially in time for the meeting of the Board of Trustees taking place this weekend, which has since been cancelled due to inclement weather. Richmond stressed that “now is the time for action.”
Vice President for Facilities Tessa Kramer ’13 emphasized that divestment was a “big-picture issue” with high student support, and that a BSG call for investigation was a low-risk position to take.
President Daniela Chediak ’13 called for an executive session, and all non-voting members of BSG were asked to vacate the room. Ultimately, the executive committee did not make an official call for the investigation of divestment.
BSG also voted on an update to the Student Organizations and Oversight Committee (SOOC) bylaws. Vice President for Student Organizations Brian Kim ’13 characterized the current bylaws, which ask the SOOC to oversee the hazing adjudication process, as “unwieldy and uncharacteristic for the committee.”
Instead, it was proposed that the College, and specifically the Judicial Board, handle the investigation of hazing.
Class of 2016 Representative Michael Colbert ’16 questioned whether such a change would overload the Judicial Board, but Kim responded that he did not believe that would be an issue.
BSG members ultimately brought the motion to a vote, and it passed unanimously among the 19 voting members present.
Chediak also introduced a proposal to approve an expenditure of up to $2,550 on the BSG’s Winter Weekend, which is scheduled for February 15 and 16. A large part of the money would go toward catering a campus-wide event on February 15 at Ladd House before the hockey game against Tufts.
At-Large Representative Sarah Nelson ’14 detailed some other planned uses for the expenditure, including novelty Winter Weekend cups and a raffle of vintage Bowdoin gear. She also emphasized the value of Winter Weekend as a “community-building activity.”
The expenditure was put to a vote and also unanimously passed among the voting members present.
Members absent from the meeting included Cole Duncan ’14, Sam Vitello ’13, Jordan Goldberg ’14, Asher Stamell ’13, Kaitlin Donahoe ’13, Max Staiger ’13, and Michael Yang ’14.