USGD appoints members, approves financial requests at first meeting

USGD on Friday appointed four new members including sophomore Travis Moore, who ran for vice president of services on Erika Green’s ticket against Joseph Grossman’s campaign in the spring election. (Connor Radnovich/DD)

The Downtown campus student government appointed four members and approved financial requests during the first Senate meeting of the year Friday.

Exercise and Wellness senior Dean Thap was appointed senator for the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion after a unanimous vote.

Thap is the athletic, banquet and special events chairman for Omega Delta Phi and was heavily involved in the Downtown Freeze event Thursday night, which brought together members of the Greek system throughout ASU.

He said his goal for this year is to increase the presence of Greek life in downtown Phoenix.

“I think he proved himself enough just with the Downtown Freeze event,” Grossman said. “We did interview him. We liked what he had to say, which is why we wanted to nominate him.”

Journalism sophomore Travis Moore, who ran for vice president of services on Erika Green’s ticket against Grossman’s campaign in the spring election, was appointed Grossman’s chief of staff during the meeting.

After his ticket’s defeat in the spring, Moore said he kept in good relations with Grossman and was urged to run for a Cronkite or Barrett Senate seat. When it became apparent that Andres Cano, last year’s chief of staff, would not return, Moore said he decided to take on the responsibility.

“We were very impressed not only by his interview, but by his resume, his past experience and his willingness to work hard for the Downtown campus,” College of Public Programs Sen. Joey Amonett said.

Moore, who was student body president in high school, will be responsible for keeping up with the staff and interns to be sure initiatives are being implemented appropriately and effectively.

Grossman described Moore as his ideal chief of staff due to his hardworking nature and aspirations in government. The Senate appointed sophomore Michael Homan to the position of local affairs director and senior Sam Tongue to director of finance, positions they both held last year.

“I couldn’t imagine anyone better to work with the city of Phoenix and really assure that our students downtown are really involved,” Cronkite School Sen. Malcolm Brinkley said of Homan.

Grossman said the community connections Homan made last year will prove invaluable this year.

Amonett accepted the Senate president position. All three returning senators were nominated for the position, but both Brinkley and Cecilio “Cy” Porras with the College of Public Programs declined the nomination.

Eneida Shqalsi, a former senator for the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion, resigned from her seat on Aug. 19, leaving a vacant Senate position. Shqalsi said in her resignation letter that she was juggling too many responsibilities to keep the position.

Grossman said the Senate has been reviewing applications for the open Senator positions. They are looking to interview and appoint new senators before the next meeting for Barrett, the Honors College; the College of Nursing and Health Innovation; the School of Letters and Sciences; the Teachers’ College; the University College; the Cronkite School and the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion.

Grossman said it’s possible there could be a full Senate of 16 this year, something USGD has never had.

The Senate also approved the Social Work Student Organization’s request for $1,373.84 to hold their annual Start of Year Mixer and send 10 students to the National Association of Social Workers’ Arizona Chapter conference in Tempe.

The Student Nutrition Council’s request for $1,800 was also approved to send four students to the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo in Philadelphia.

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Correction: August 28, 2012

An earlier version of this article incorrectly identified Eneida Shqalsi as a former senator for the Walter Cronkite School.