Matt Weir / The Collegian
An Associated Students, Inc. (ASI) senator resigned earlier this month, and said it was because ASI is too passive.
Jamie San Andres, senior anthropology and political science double major, served as the senator for the college of social sciences since June 1, 2009. Her resignation was official as of March 1, 2010.
San Andres officially left ASI because of work-schedule conflicts. However, she left on bad terms.
“I don’t want to be a member of an association that leads by following,” San Andres said.
San Andres said ASI is too afraid to step on toes, while students are making their voices heard with events like the rally on March 4.
San Andres has been a vocal proponent, and planner, of student action over the last year. She also stormed out of the Jan. 27 ASI meeting after an argument.
She said ASI should have put out a statement of support for the day of action.
“The masses have spoken, but the representatives have not,” San Andres said.
San Andres’s criticism extended to representation. She said senators have no obligation to communicate with the students they represent.
Alex Andreotti, ASI’s executive vice president, said she is never happy to see a senator leave the student government. The differences in opinion, she said, are what make ASI successful.
“When Jamie asked the tough questions, and made her opinion known, it opened the eyes of our Senate to know why they were here and who they were here to represent,” Andreotti said.
Andreotti disagreed with San Andres’s take on the March 4 day of action. She said though 300 students gathered in the Peace Garden, ASI represents 21,500 students. So, ASI must find the fine line between the two groups.
“ASI, basically, has to find the balance between activism and being quiet,” Andreotti said.
ASI does more of its work at the state level, Andreotti said.
Though there is no official mechanism to ensure senators speak with their constituents, Andreotti said, it is part of the general job description.
“Senators are told they are required to meet with their college deans,” Andreotti said. “[And] do your best to meet with clubs and organizations, [and] talk to your constituents.”
Andreotti said she meets with senators on a monthly basis to discuss their interactions with constituents.
Gary Nelson, the advisor to ASI, said Patrick Simon replaced San Andres as the senator for the college of social sciences.
Nelson said ASI’s executive vice president appointed Simon on the recommendation from ASI’s personnel committee, which is made up of senators and students. The Senate as a whole approved Simon on March 10.