S.G.I. Proposes Innovations and Changes at Floor Meeting


Student Government Incorporated held it’s bi-weekly floor meeting on Nov. 7. The executive board brought up concerns having to do with campus activities and budget costs and representatives from different committees were able to raise questions and vote on them.

Among the chief concerns were plans to collaborate with the foundation Each One Counts to raise funds for terminally ill children. Student Government President Sabino Curcio introduced the idea in his report to bring the foundation to the University.

The foundation would be in collaboration with SGI, Student Affairs and the Athletics program to help raise funds. Curcio said that the difference between this foundation and others is that Each One Counts focuses more on therapeutic treatments instead of medical ones.

“The funds for this foundation go towards giving these kids alternative treatments such as massages and aromatherapy,” Curcio said. “These kids are going through endless blood work and have a lot of tension. We just want to give them the opportunity to step back and get something for themselves and forget about their illness for a while.”

The plans to introduce Each One Counts to the student body were briefly discussed during the meeting. Curcio said that the plan for right now is to host a ping pong tournament on campus. Players will pay either $5 a person or $10 a team. SGI hopes to have the two finalists play in the middle of Carneseca Arena during the annual Relay for Life.

When asked if there were any other plans to help raise funds other than the ping pong tournament Curcio said, “Right now we just want to build it up. We want to focus on certain main events instead of having a lot of little ideas and also to remember that the purpose isn’t the ping pong but its deeper service meaning.”

Each One Counts has already found huge success in other schools, such as Villanova. SGI hopes that in future years, the University will be able to raise more money than Villanova and compete in friendly tournaments with them. One of the future plans for the ping pong tournament is to move it from Carnesecca to Madison Square Garden and have a representative from St. John’s play against a representative from Villanova.

The other chief concern at the meeting was brought up during Junior Senator John Marchi’s report. SGI has been trying to get the reality TV stars of The Buried Life to come to the University for a free speaking engagement.

The Buried Life is a show about four young men who go across the country in trying to complete their list of 100 things they’d like to do before they die. For each task they complete, they help a stranger accomplish their dream.

The members of the cast have been on a college tour around the country. They engage the students in conversations about what they might want to do before they die and at the same time encourage them to engage in community service.

St. John’s currently is in the final portion of the contest, after it was announced that it had won the regional round. At the time the Torch went to print St. John’s was in second place with 45-percent. California State University was in first with 47-percent.

“This is a service oriented event,” Marchi said. “They’re all about making the impossible happen for themselves and benefitting others to help them out as well.”

SGI continually stressed the importance of winning this contest during the meeting. Plans to “sweep” the campus computers to vote for St. John’s were discussed and free basketball tickets were offered to the first two people to promote the contest on Facebook.

Curcio said that The Buried Life  reflects the Vincentian view of the University and that’s why it was so important that it win the contest. “To have them speak to a University that’s focused to helping the poor like St. Vincent was, that’s just incredible,” he said.

After the meeting, Marchi commented on the dedication S.G.I. is putting into bringing The Buried Life to the University.

“Student Government is extremely excited to be partnering with the Career Center and Verizon Wireless in this national competition,” Marchi said in an email. “The Buried Life is a TV show that truly encompasses the Vincentian values of our University,  and this unique opportunity will allow our students to see that spirit of St. Vincent de Paul exists beyond St. John’s.

“We’re in it to win it now, and need everyone’s help to win the national competition.  Become a fan of ‘Verizon Wireless Career’s” facebook fan, click on campus, and vote for St. John’s- it’s that simple!” he said.

Senior Senator Ellen McBurny mentioned during the meeting that the first time the senior class will be able to vote on what the senior gift will be. Plans for how the class will vote were not mentioned. There were no ideas for what the gift  could be at this time.

It was also announced that the senior gift from the Class of 2011 will be Adirondeck chairs outside the D’Angelo Center to provide additional seating around campus.

Other concerns were brought up during the Budget Committee’s report. The dance group RAAZ was granted almost $1,600 to participate in Manhattan Project 3.0, a prestigious dance competition. Part of the money was to go to the group to stay in hotels in the city. A voting member of S.G.I. questioned RAAZ was granted hotel money when they live so close to the city. Budget Committee Chair Jason Chen said that the contest mandated them to stay in the hotel.

S.G.I. also brought up plans for a new Christmas tree that will be placed outside St. Augustine Hall. The tree will be about 25 feet tall and be fully decorated. It was announced that the Winter Carnival will be held on Wed, Dec. 7, which is on a Thursday schedule.

During Kenyon’s report, she mentioned incidents where items are missing from the S.G.I. office.

Curcio also thanked the floor for promoting S.G.I.’s recognition around campus, by doing things like wearing t-shirts endorsing S.G.I. He said that in recent years, S.G.I.’s recognition has been lacking around campus, and was proud that students were doing their part.