Resolution calling for Senate Chambers at Sonoma State University

Resolved that the Sonoma State University Academic Senate calls upon the university to provide Senate chambers as described in the rationale below; and be it further

Resolved that the SSU Academic Senate requests that Senate chambers be identified by 2018, and be it further

Resolved that this resolution be sent to President Ruben Armiñana, Provost Andrew Rogerson, Vice President of Administration and Finance, Larry Furukawa-Schlereth, incoming President Judy Sakaki and the Campus Planning Committee.

Rationale

Faculty Governance is part of the shared governance structure on campus and has been since the early days of SSU. We are a permanent and vital organization on campus. Faculty Governance is composed of nineteen committees, the Academic Senate being the largest. We are requesting space for “Senate chambers” defined as meeting space for all of the faculty governance committees.

Currently, the Senate meets in the Student Center for its plenary sessions due to the lack of availability of other space on campus. Using the Student Center for Senate meetings is less than desirable due to the policy of the Student Center, which gives priority to student activities. We do not wish them to do otherwise; we would rather have our own space. The Associated Students have also explained their desire for us not to use the Student Center space, in a recent AS Senate resolutionStudent Organization Room Displacement Reparation. Faculty Governance committees take up space in well-used conference rooms, and can be bumped out of the space if the “owners” of that conference room need the space. It is particularly difficult to find alternative space once the semester has started.

We envision Senate Chambers as approximately 700-800 sq. ft. to fit tables and chairs for a maximum of 40 people. The tables and chairs would need to be flexible. The space would also need to include computer projection, sound capabilities and enough space for catering (tables, trash cans). We estimate about $10,000 would be needed to cover the needs of outfitting the room. We are willing to use surplus furniture to outfit the space, if available. We would prefer that the space be as central to campus as possible since the majority of faculty and other members of our committees have offices in the main academic buildings on campus. If a space of that size cannot be identified by 2018, then a conference room that could fit 15 – 18 people and under Senate “ownership” would also prove useful.

Approved 5/12/16