OSA senate meeting

Cory Sparks, Editor in Chief

The Oshkosh Student Association (OSA) discussed ideas surrounding a Ukrainian supply drive, vacant senate positions and the fall break second survey results in their March 2 meeting.

The meeting covered a variety of impactful topics in a little over an hour, and senior Raiden Montero brought a topic forward that he believes shouldn’t be seen as an overseas issue.

Montero brought up the idea of holding a Ukraine supply drive for refugees who have fled the country and are lacking all types of resources.

Ukraine is currently under attack from Russia, as Vladimir Putin is attempting to expand Russia’s land ownership. Russia has been inciting violence and killing civilians for the last several years.

Montero, the history and Japanese study major visited Ukraine in 2019 to promote the UW Oshkosh wrestling team and his Christian faith.

While in Ukraine, Montero made a couple of friends who he was keeping in contact with until last week.

Montero expressed his concern for his Ukrainian companions, one of which is named Roma. Roma is fighting for Ukraine, and Montero showed a picture of him holding an AK-47 as he prepared for war.

When talking to the OSA, Montero addressed the severity of the problem despite it not being geographically close to the Oshkosh area. He said this issue cannot be ignored.

“This is a human problem, not just a European problem,” Montero said.

Montero further emphasized the importance of what is happening in Ukraine by using his homeland of Thailand as an example. He said that the area is fully under control, and he hasn’t been able to keep in contact with his family.

“My family is from Thailand, and we already lost our freedom,” he said. “We are oppressed. I haven’t been able to see my family in six years.”

Montero’s speech was met by encouragement around the room from OSA President Jacob Fischer, Associate Director for Student Involvement Missy Burgess and others.

Montero said he felt relieved that others cared about the problem, and partial solution, that he was bringing to the table.

“I was beyond relieved to see that people were moved by what I had to say because I’m extremely passionate about this subject,” Montero said. “To see President Fischer immediately hop on the microphone to talk about possibilities with this, all while Jean Kwaterski and Missy Burgess immediately starting typing away on their computers to see which organizations we can send donations through, was a great reassurance to me that people still care about global issues.”

There is now a box in Reeve Union by Titan Central intended for the following supplies:
Non-perishable food, new clothes, blue and yellow painters tape (to prevent windows from shattering), gently used military gear, first aid and first aid kits, tents and sleeping bags and protective military gear not prohibited by the United States.

Another topic brought forth was the upcoming president and vice president elections along with the lack of people applying for Senate positions being applied for.

Fischer said that involvement in student government is crucial to the college experience for the entire student body.

“Student government is something that every student should keep a close eye on,” Fischer said. “When students pay attention, it keeps the student government accountable for the needs of all students.”

OSA elections took place on March 8 and 9, but results weren’t available by the press deadline.

There was also a notion to make sure there were more UWO GO program signs around campus. UWO GO is a safe-ride service provided by the UWO police department. OSA wants additional signs in Lot 39 and at Fox Valley Technical College in order to make the services known to the student body.

Fischer said that the campus transportation option is especially important during the winter months in northern Wisconsin.
“It has been a cold winter with some rough weather,” he said. “UWO GO is an amazing service that is free to all students. We want as many students as possible to be aware of the service, so they can safely move to and from campus.”

The OSA also sent out a second survey regarding a fall break after the first survey did not have an option for students to indicate that they don’t want a fall break.

The second survey came back with 62.71% of students not wanting a fall break where the days off would be made up at the end of the school year in May.

This survey received 665 responses.

Fischer said he believes the survey was a success and that OSA will relay the student responses to governing bodies.

“The majority of students decided that a fall break is not something that they need,” Fischer said. “OSA will do its job in presenting this information to administration. I believe that our survey was effective.”

OSA Assembly meetings are held at 4 p.m. Mondays in the Reeve Union Theater, R307. OSA Senate meetings are held at 5 p.m. on Wednesdays in Reeve Union 202.