Next ASI president outlines plans for students, campus

Terrymartin:Terry Martin will start June as ASI president for the 2010-11 term.:Tina Horton - State Hornet


Terrymartin:Terry Martin will start June as ASI president for the 2010-11 term.:Tina Horton – State Hornet

Kalie Barnes-Young

Improving campus life is one of Terry Martin’s top priorities when he takes office this fall as president of Associated Students Inc.

“It’s very difficult to choose just one top priority,” said Martin, who earned 43 percent of the vote over his opponents in the 2010 ASI elections. “One of the ways that we can improve campus life is to build our community through organizational housing.”

In order to provide on-campus housing for organizations, such as Sac State’s sororities and fraternities, the current ordinance established in 1993 by the City of Sacramento would have to be overturned. Another option would be for the university to be granted a special permit to allow organizational housing.

Martin also plans to change Sac State’s reputation from that of a commuter campus to a destination campus. One way to do this is to increase resources and funds to clubs and organizations, he said.”We have some amazing organizations here on campus,” Martin said. “I want ASI to be able to step up and work alongside these groups so that we can really build a unified community that students want to be a part of.”

Current ASI president Roberto Torres said Martin’s experience with ASI made him a qualified candidate for the job.

Martin started as an ASI volunteer in his freshman year. The next year, he served on the finance and budget committees before moving up to vice president of finance the following year.

“It’s good to leave the office to someone who knows the position and what that entails,” Torres said. “Ideologically, we come from different backgrounds and positions, but I’m optimistic about Terry. He’s in a good position to continue to make ASI a better organization.”

Martin also credits his election win to his outlined goals for the upcoming year.

“I’ve learned that every goal you set has to be smart. I came into the VP of Finance office with a long list of goals and I accomplished every single one of them,” Martin said. “I want to be able to do that as president by having goals that are smart, strategic and time-sensitive.”

One time-sensitive goal is to work with the administration to make sure that students get the classes they need to graduate.

The Office of the University Registrar announced April 12 that a 14-unit enrollment cap would be in place during the first period of registration.

The announcement has faced a lot of criticism from students and faculty alike, causing the administration to defend its decision in recent weeks.

“The glaring problem is that students can’t take five classes and take the full load they need in order to graduate on time,” Martin said. “I plan on working with the administration closely in order to ensure that students get that fifth class, or more.”

Along with the unit cap, Martin said the increasing budget cuts and rising student fees have affected students’ quality of education.

“The fee increases are functioning to price students out of higher education and I think that’s ridiculous,” Martin said.

In order to encourage more communication between the students and administration, Martin said he plans to set up open forums where students can publicly voice their concerns without third-party moderators.

Martin also plans to increase ASI’s visibility.

“We’ve made good strides this year with more students becoming aware of what ASI is,” Torres said. “Terry is in a good place right now to take the progress that we’ve made so far and increase that awareness.”

Martin said he plans to establish outreach programs and meet-and-greet sessions where students can learn more about ASI and its members. By doing this, Martin said, he believes it will help give ASI a more public face and possibly increase voter turnout during elections.

“One of the main things is to make sure students know who their representatives are,” Martin said.

Despite budget cuts and fee increases, Martin said he remains optimistic for the upcoming school year.

“I’m looking forward to a really exciting year,” Martin said. “We’re going to see some creative advances in ASI this coming year that I think Sac State can be proud of.”

Kalie Barnes-Young can be reached at [email protected].