You may or may not realize that Student Senate elections have been postponed. You may or may not know that they have been postponed because of a lack of nominations for the senate positions. Due to the lack of nominations, half of the regularly held senate elections (2nd and 3rd yr. M.Div) will be held in the fall next year when elections for MTS, M.A. and PhD senators are usually held. Senate is pushing hard for nominations for President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer particularly because these people have roles that have responsibilities at the beginning of the next school year. Senate will be accepting nominations for these positions till March 26 (email Joella Ranaivoson to nominate) and take peoples acceptances till April 2. The Executive elections will be held April 15.
Perhaps you didn’t feel up for nominating someone because you don’t know what you are nominating them for. None of the executive committee will be running again so the spots are open! So here is the rundown.
Executive Team: Meet once a month together but separately from the full senate. This group includes the President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Secretary.
President: Responsible for liaising with administration and faculty, setting the agenda and running full Senate meetings as well as Executive Team meetings (Currently Anthony VanderLaan)
Vice-President: Runs Senate elections, assists the president, acts as President in their absence (Currently Joella Ranaivoson)
Secretary: Keeps the minutes at all Senate meetings, sends the minutes for approval to the senators, and helps keep students updated on what is going on. (Currently Emi Johnson)
Treasurer: Keeps the budget. (Currently David Zigterman)
Senator: Working alongside the four executives are 12 additional senators representing the M.Div, M.A., M.T.S., Th.M, and Ph.D programs. These individuals are charged with representing their respective programs and voicing those thoughts and opinions to the Senate. This year the full senate has been represented by the following individuals: Steve Agler, Ram Aryal, Giuliano Coccaro, Emily Colledge, Ron Hunsucker, Sam Kim, Jennie Palkowski, Emily Sajdak, Eric Sarwar, Bob VanLonkhuyzen, Robert Van Zanen, and Erin Zoutendam.
From Senate President Anthony: I would ask you to please consider what role you can play in senate. For some of you this may mean working as an elected member of senate. For others this may mean remembering that senate does exist, and that it exists for you. Senate would love nothing more, moving forward, than to assist in creating a positive environment for students.
Senators answer some questions:
- Why are you part of senate? — Ronald Hunsucker writes, “I am part of senate because I wanted to see where the Holy Spirit is leading right now at CTS.” “I want to be a responsible and hospitable listener and bring concerns of my fellow seminarians to the table,” writes Emily Colledge.
- What does Student Senate do/you do for Student Senate? — Ram Aryal, “I promoted food pantry needs and work on the hospitality needs of international students.” David Zigterman believes that one of the positive Student Senate initiatives this year was that it hosted a cultural intelligence and race and leadership workshop. Emily Colledge agrees saying, “I am also proud of the work that is being done to increase cultural intelligence and to keep our hearts and minds turned toward racial reconciliation.” Erin Zoutendam writes, “I’m impressed by the way Student Senate has tried to follow the Holy Spirit’s leadings this year. The senators have gone out of their way to respond to needs that aren’t being met elsewhere.”
- What do you think senate needs from its future Senators? — Anthony VanderLaan writes, “Senate needs a handful of individuals who are committed to pursuing a vision of what CTS can and should be. It is critical that, moving forward, senators enlist the participation of the student body at large to help create a positive culture.” Ronald Hunsucker says, “Most importantly, what senate needs from its future senators is a pulse that reflects changes that benefit students in our spiritual formation, and calling to be disciples of Jesus Christ.” Jenny Palkowski believes that, “we need senators who are bold and tireless, willing to go against the flow in order to bring about the best for the institution and student body.”
By Anthony Vander Laan and Robert Van Zanen