STORY BY BETH LEVALLEY
The Senate did not approve a new group on campus entitled the Drake Warren Warriors.
This organization would have promoted United States Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts if she were to run for president.
Because the group was not seen as sustainable, the majority of the Senate voted no.
Vice President of Drake Warren Warriors, Jim Freerksen, spoke about making the group sustainable by holding events that Sen. Warren would approve of after the campaign.
“We would set up large events like rallies, visual events and collaborate with other groups such as the Action League based around Warren’s ideals,” Freerksen said.
While the Senate rarely declines student organizations, they wanted to set a precedent for the future.
Sen. O’Hea reminded the table that whether they vote for or against this group, it will be a model for candidacy groups that are expected to come about in the next year, and it will expedite the process in the future.
Sen. O’Hea and Sen. Thomason suggested rebranding the group to appear as a populist or even socialist organization, rather than using Sen. Warren as a spokesperson.
Freerksen discouraged this idea by explaining how their events are based around Sen. Warren and not the sole purpose of the events.
“We’re not fighting for candidacy, we’re fighting for the spirit of Elizabeth Warren,” Freerksen said.
With the potential of more presidential support, organizations forming on campus, Senate found it best to veto the Drake Warren Warriors.
Representatives from University Communications also spoke to Senate Thursday about their efforts to revamp Drake’s social media pages.
Niki Smith, digital media specialist, works with all of Drake’s social media outlets to connect with potential and active students, alumni, donors and friends.
Smith discussed her intentions of connecting academic senators with their respective college representative. She also encouraged senators to share their ideas for social media or each indivdual colleges’ websites with her.
“The office’s mission is to advance the reputation of Drake University,” Smith said. “The simplest stuff is the most engaging.”
Evan Favreau was also in attendance. Favreau is a digital media specialist and an admissions counselor for Drake.
He spoke highly of the new promotional Instagram account @onpaintedstreet where a different Drake student is in control of publishing photos each week.
His goal is to utilize such social media sites for promoting Drake to prospective students and and as a retention tool.
“I’m just really happy (On Painted Street) exists,” Favreau said.
The Senate allocated $1,732 to Malaysian Night, held by the Malaysian Student Association (MASA).
This is MASA’s biggest event of the year.
The money allocated by the Senate will cover part of the cost for food and materials for marketing the event.
MASA plans to incorporate more Malaysian culture into this year’s event.
The group will include timeline sketches and various forms of entertainment, including cultural dances.
MASA hopes previous attendees President David Maxwell and his wife Maddie attend the event, and Dean Randall Blum of the College of Business and Public Administration has already confirmed his attendance.
Tickets will be sold for $10 the week before the event and $12 at the door. The ticket sales will primarily cover the costs of food.
Vice President of Student Life Duden proposed that Senate write words of encouragement to organizations that are turned down by senate.
Sen. Krsyta Thomason is working with Drake Environmental Action League to possibly eliminate the plastic bags at the C-Store.
She is also working on recreating Bulldog Bucks and implementing a rewards system that would entice students to visit businesses around the Drake area.
This could potentially be a smartphone app or on students’ IDs.
Vice President Duden had words of wisdom for the Senate as well as all students of Drake.
“After spring break, it’s hard to stay on track. Pace yourself and stay organized,” Duden said.