The Associated Students of Madison moved to support a proposed resolution to create a statewide Student Governance Council and appointed a new equity and inclusion chair on Wednesday night.

Will Scheder, the President of University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Student Government Association, proposed the statewide council resolution in an effort to gain support from ASM. 

The resolution aims to bring all students across the UW System together to influence statewide decisions regarding public higher education institutions in Wisconsin. Scheder said the council would be student-led and run to best reflect the needs of UW System students.

Scheder said the existing infrastructure, including the current UW System Student Representatives and Student Presidential Council, is very ineffective and needs to be revised to give students a greater role in making statewide decisions. The resolution needs support from UW System students in order to advance action the proposed council, he explained.

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“I care about this and I want to make this successful,” Scheder said. “I am passionate about getting this off the ground, and I am incredibly committed to making this work.”

Scheder plans to travel to all UW Systems schools to propose the resolution to different student governance bodies. He hopes to launch the council by the fall of 2022.

ASM members voted in support of drafting legislation that would call for the creation of Scheder’s proposed statewide council, making ASM the third student government entity to officially express support for the resolution.

“Shared Governance is what allows for students to organize and have their voice heard,” said MGR Govindarajan, the ASM Legislative Affairs Chair in a press release. “However, one of the biggest problems we face in making effective change is gathering support from outside Madison. … Having a statewide Shared Governance organization would put more weight behind state level advocacy.”

ASM also appointed a new equity and inclusion chair. The position was vacated by Djamal Lyelcyrus when he resigned last month. Diverse Engagement Coordinator Ndemazea Fonkem was serving as the acting equity and inclusion chair. 

Madisin Randolph and Anjali Subramanian both ran for the open position and presented their campaigns during the meeting. 

Randolph said her mission as equity and inclusion chair would be to provide more multicultural spaces on campus, especially for first-generation college students. As a first-generation student herself, Randolph argued UW needs to better acknowledge and support first-generation students and provide spaces for these individuals.

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Subramanian said she would coordinate with other student organizations and ASM to ensure outreach is being provided to students across campus. Subramanian, who has been involved with ASM in previous years, claimed her knowledge of the structure of ASM would make her a fitting candidate. Subramanian also emphasized the importance of learning new perspectives through other people.

“As Equity and Inclusion Chair, I would really want to focus on coordinating with others within ASM and other student organizations. I want to work to ensure all student’s voices are heard and amplified,” Subramanian said. “I am very excited about this new opportunity to create change on campus.”

The council majority elected Anjali Subramanian, and the council moved to formally appoint her.

The meeting concluded with the Reports of Standing Committees and Boards as well as Chair Reports.