Category Archives: WSA

Student Groups Fair 2014

tumblr_macr0bp9DO1r13hxvo1_1280Daniel Caballero ’15 wants you to get involved:

Kickoff the 2014-2015 school year on a high note by attending the 23rd
Annual Student Groups Fair. Student groups are a big part of life at
Wes and the WSA sponsored event is a great opportunity to meet with
both new and established groups. The annual fair also offers you a
chance to network with a few school departments who provide a great
variety of programs every year. Local vendors from the Middletown
community will be in attendance as well to help make the afternoon fun
and entertaining.

Start the year right and come on down with your friends to the Student Groups Fair at the Huss Courtyard between 2 and 5 pm on Friday, September 12.

Date: Friday, September 12th, 2014
Time: 2:00PM – 5:00PM
Place: Huss Courtyard 

Unofficial Orientation Series ’14: Rage Update

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(Image: Catherine Avalone, The Middletown Press)

You’ve now arrived on campus, and we hope that you find your time here enriching and transformative. In that hope, we feel that it would be ill-advised to allow you to not have at least a foundational understanding of the things that have forced us as a community into dialogue, disagreement, and action.

This is not to scare you or to give you a negative impression of the University. However, we are certain that most if not all of you were told about the “passion” that Wesleyan students have and the issues that we care about on campus are at the forefront of those passions. While there is certainly no requirement to take an activist stance on any of these issues and it is in fact easy to sink beneath the radar on these issues and all the others not covered here, we would plead with you to be engaged in the community that you are now a part of.

Read this, ask questions, and reach out to students and faculty that have been here before you. We hope that as you begin your time here, you fully invest yourself as a community member committed to making Wesleyan as good as it can be for you and for those after you. Caring about Wesleyan does not foreclose critique on Wesleyan and as you read this, and other things like it, we hope you understand that too.

WSA Passes Resolution 11.35: Wesleyan Divestment from Companies Profiting from or Contributing to Illegal Occupation of Palestine

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A few days ago, on Sunday, May 4, the Wesleyan Student Assembly (WSA) passed Resolution 11.35: Wesleyan Divestment from Companies Profiting from or Contributing to Illegal Occupation of Palestine. This resolution has two operative clauses. The first calls upon Wesleyan University to divest from companies that a) provide weapons, security systems, prisons, or military support for the occupation of Palestinian land; b) build or maintain the wall between Israel and Palestine and the demolition of Palestinian homes; and c) help build, maintain, or develop Israeli settlements, outposts, roads, and transportation systems in occupied Palestinian territory (defined in the resolution as the Gaza Strip, West Bank, and East Jerusalem). The goal of the resolution is to remove the financial incentive to participate in the occupation of Palestinian land. The resolution’s second clause recognizes that the University will likely not divest from Israeli companies, and thus calls upon the WSA to divest its own endowment from the University’s endowment to avoid supporting the occupation by the transitive property. 

FAQ: What’s Going on with Fraternities, Sexual Assault, and the WSA?

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TRIGGER WARNING: The following discusses the issue of sexual assault at Wesleyan and may be triggering for some readers. Community and official support resources can be accessed here, here, and here.

If you’ve been on campus this semester, you’ve probably had at least one conversation about sexual assault and residential fraternities. Since spring break, there have been four contentious WSA meetings on the subject, drawing sexual assault survivors, fraternity brothers, and other members of the community together to discuss policy to reduce sexual assault, and what that means for Wesleyan’s residential fraternities. The discussion has morphed into a discussion encompassing not only sexual assault and fraternities, but also male privilege, gender equality, gender relations, and how all of those impact the social spaces in which we move daily.

Despite all the discussion on this topic, there has been considerable confusion on both sides about the various resolutions that have been introduced. This FAQ post aims to clear up some of that confusion.

Sexual assault has always been a problem on campus, but we haven’t talked about it much until a few months ago. Likewise, we don’t seriously discuss the role of fraternities on campus very frequently. How did the current discussion begin?

Last spring, a Wesleyan student was raped in the common room of Psi U. Following the incident, the student who committed the rape was dismissed by the University. The survivor left the University as well. In early March of this year, the survivor sued Psi Upsilon, the Wesleyan Xi Chapter of the frat, and several Psi U brothers for negligence. It was this lawsuit that set off the current discussions about sexual assault and fraternities. 

WSA Survey Results on Frats and Sexual Assault Released

Safety of fraternity spaces on campus, relative to other spaces:

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19% say fraternity spaces are safer
31% say fraternity spaces are equally safe
47% say fraternity spaces are less safe

On April 18, the WSA sent out an all-campus email asking for student opinions about Greek life, safety, and gender equality. From April 18 to April 21, the WSA collected data. Within that time, there were 796 responses, which were close to representative of campus in terms of gender, class year, and Greek membership. A comprehensive breakdown of the survey are available here, on the WSA blog. The full set of survey results, complete with the number of people who answered each question and the questions asked, is available here: Sexual Assault and Greek Life Survey Results.

While I will be posting an FAQ post explaining Resolution B and the related resolutions later today, a few interesting excerpts of this right now, presented without comment: 

Sexual Violence, Spaces, and Privilege

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Amidst the celebration and festivities that are the end of theses this past weekend, a conversation surrounding sexual violence continues to rage through our community, a topic this publication has covered many, many times before. These last few weeks, however, the discourse has intensified and fraternities, or more importantly the spaces in which they occupy, has become the center of attention and controversy.

There are a lot of angry people on campus right now, including me. More specifically, however, what bothers me the most about the way this conversation has taken place is that people continue to talk right past each other, and many times seem to completely disregard what others have to say.

So let’s talk about privilege for a little bit. Buzzfeed recently had another one of their typically useless quizzes going viral lately, this one asking, “How Privileged Are You?” It might be worth taking a look at the 100 point quiz and the contents of the criteria. Or go ahead, to take the quiz. “I went to an elite college,” for example, is something pretty much all of us should be checking off.

It may be kind of useless and just internet-buzz material, but for me, the quiz reminded me of two things: all of us have some form of privilege, and that sometimes we forget what privilege we hold. More importantly, however, it reminded me that some of us have significantly more privilege than others.

Hold on just a second. I hope you do not think I am digressing from the issue of sexual violence in this post, because privilege is an immense component of how we speak, what we say, and even how we say it. It shapes our views and beliefs, and those with privilege typically have a much easier time getting what they want compared to those who have much less. And in the discourse surrounding sexual assault at Wesleyan, privilege plays a huge role.

Meet Grant Tanenbaum ’15, The Only Person Running for WSA President

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Every year on Wesleying, we typically have a very sassy interview with the WSA presidential and vice presidential candidates (a tip of the hat to the venerable frostedmoose and the awesome Roxie for their extra sass-tastic features, which you can see here and here). It’s a shame that we don’t have any other candidates like last year’s dark horse favorite Keith Conway ’16 or the frostedmoose-proclaimed “Vanilla” Zach Malter ’13, but we’re making due.

Read after the jump to meet Grant Tanenbaum ’15, the only person running for WSA President this year (minus a hilarious April Fools’ “opponent”, a prank orchestrated by Kate Cullen ’16 that nearly gave Grant an ulcer). This is the first post of two parts on the prez, so stay tuned.

Room Selection Begins Tonight

Senior Housing Options

From Kate Cullen ’16 and the WSA:

In case you’ve been living under a rock and haven’t checked your email or heard the nervous chatter around campus, room selection begins tonight! To give you a better sense of where your grade will actually live (cough… not all Seniors live on Fountain and not all Juniors live in LowRise/HighRise) Mika Reyes ’17 and Fred Ayres ’17 of WSA put together a few maps (rising Seniors, Juniors, Sophomores) for you. Also check back to Wesleying’s “Housing Options for Room Selection Guide” for any last minute questions about different dorms.

To all the best of luck!

Kate Cullen ’16 and WSA

Map Links:

Rising Seniors
Rising Juniors
Rising Sophomores

LIVE HOUSING SELECTIONS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW.

Sign Up for the WSA Kickball Tournament

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From Lizzie “Shack Attach” Shackney ’17 and Key “I’m a Boss” Session ’17:

Gather your student group, sports team, house, hallway, and friends to sign up for the WSA Kickball Tournament! It’ll be at the Bacon Field House starting at 12 pm on Sunday, April 6th and it’s totally free. Sign up and get your friends to come cheer for you. There will be music, excitement, and $100 for the winning team, bobble water bottles for the runners up, as well as the pride of being able to say that your student group/friend group/whatever is the best (at kickball).

Sign up HERE by Friday, April 4th.

Date: Sign up by Friday, April 4th (Actual kickball tournament is on Sunday, April 6th!)
Time: 12pm-6pm on April 6th
Place: Bacon Field House
Sign Up: HERE HERE HERE

Student Group Leadership Summit

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From Lizzie “Shack Attack”/”Lizzie McGuire” Shackney ’17:

All student group leaders and aspiring student group leaders: Come to this year’s Student Group Leadership Summit this Tuesday, March 4th, at 7 pm in Usdan 108. It’s a great chance to hear what all of Wesleyan’s 277 registered student groups have been up to, and to talk about what’s been going well, not so well, the future of your group, or any issues you may want to bring up. Members of the WSA will be there to remind you of how the WSA can be a resource to you.

There will most def be cookies, coffee, and cross-group collaboration. Bring a younger member from your group because we’re all about ensuring the continuity of student groups.

Date: Tuesday, March 4th
Time: 7pm-9pm
Place: Usdan 108
Cost: Freezies