Student Association President Lamar Thorpe said Tuesday night that he will establish guidelines for using the $25,000 University grant the group received last week before he leaves office April 30.
University officials announced last week a two-year pilot program to fund “socially responsible initiatives.” Thorpe, a senior, said officials wanted to show support for the SA executive’s outreach efforts toward Gallaudet University students who were protesting the former President-designate Jane Fernandes in October. Thorpe used private funds to provide blankets, food, water and other necessities to protesters who were camping outdoors.
The SA president said that he plans to establish a commission to oversee the allocation of the grant money even though he will no longer be president beginning May 1 and transition into sophomore Nicole Capp’s term has already begun.
“It is going to be up to me and my administration to set guidelines,” Thorpe said in a phone interview. “I will appoint the first commission … I want to make sure it is done the way I want.”
The SA president said that the commission would provide money for student organizations, including the SA, which request funds to pursue socially conscious projects.
Students from the Progressive Student Union have been lobbying for funds to finance GW’s admission into the Worker Rights Consortium, an independent labor rights monitoring organization.
Thorpe said it will be “up to the commission” to decide if grant money will go towards the WRC membership.
Matthew Brokman, leader of the Progressive Student Union, said the grant was created “specifically for the WRC affiliation,” among other projects.
“While Lamar is correct that it will be up to the commission to decide how to spend the funds, being that three SA resolutions have passed – one of which even offered to pay the fee out of SA funds – and that the grant was established because of our pushing and a clear need for affiliation, we fully expect that WRC fees will be covered by the grant,” said Brokman, a junior.
The SA will meet again Tuesday night. The first meeting of the Senate-elect will take place Wednesday evening.