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ASI leaders discuss year ahead

With the first senate meeting commencing this afternoon, the executive board of Associated Students, Inc. is heading into the new year with aims of generating more student participation and improving campus success rates and safety.

With 13 new senators and three new faces on the executive board, ASI is facing a transitional year.

However, as a returning president, Moses Menchaca plans to work at ensuring consistency. His vision is to see the student voice continue to grow from last year, especially amongst the administration in light of realignments at the university level.

Menchaca said some future focuses would include being proactive in sexual assault and campus safety issues, currently a nationwide concern, and focusing on increasing student success alongside the goals outlined by President Joseph Castro.

Additionally, in light of last semester’s conflict concerning cultural diversity between ASI and a student-formed coalition, Menchaca said strategies are being considered.

“The conversation had become how do we increase cultural competency across all students, and primarily all student leaders,” Menchaca said. “What we hope to do moving forward is looking at the President’s Commission on Human Relations and Equity and having a similar one that’s student-led and student-based to ensure students have the opportunity to voice their concerns about diversity issues.”

Meanwhile, new to ASI is executive vice president Abigail Hudson, a junior who is looking to engage the average student in participation to improve Fresno State’s environment. She said that with the college being primarily a commuter school, students often come and go without staying to participate in campus life.

“I think there’s definitely room for improvement,” Hudson said. “It’s not something that will happen in one or two years, but I think things like FresWOW, which student involvement was putting on, and Homecoming that we’re planning are really good ways of getting students and bringing them to campus.”

While personal goals include focusing on campus and community revitalization, Hudson said that, as a governing body, ASI is looking to develop further by expanding “resources by partnering with other entities on campus.”

Following last year, Menchaca said he realized ASI played a “weaver” role – a link across the campus due to their involvement in multiple projects. He said there was importance in sustaining various relationships, with the likes of students, faculty and alumni, in order to harness what is best for students.

“Looking forward, we’re hoping to expand that role, solidify that weaver component,” Menchaca said.