ASI president encourages student activism

Sean Keister

Associated Students Inc. President Terry Martin spoke about ASI’s accomplishments over the past year in a speech today in the Union Lobby.

Around 25 students attended the event, where ASI served pizza and held a raffle.

Martin, who graduates in May with a degree in economics, addressed topics such as fee increases, elections and ways for students to get involved on campus.

Martin also addressed campus safety issues involving sexual assaults that have plagued the campus this year.

“Never in my years on campus has safety ever been a bigger issue,” Martin said.

Added security and self-defense classes have started up on campus as ways to help offset the risk of further assaults.

Martin brought up the importance of academic advising. He said it is essential in order to get students through college ideally in four years and get them on the way to dream jobs.

He also reminded students of the OneCard program, which allows students to get discounts at certain businesses when they use their card.

Although students have enough financial worries, Martin said more fee increases are on the way. The athletics fee increases to $125 next year. Students in 2009 voted down the increase, but that vote was later overturned.

“I’m personally opposed to the increases,” Martin said. “It just makes students wonder why they even voted on it if it was just going to get overturned.”

A major theme of Martin’s speech was student involvement through participation in student government and activism.

He encouraged students to come up to the ASI office, located on the third floor of the University Union, once in a while to further communication between the organization and students.

One of the issues Martin was most excited about was the foundation of a student activism class, which teaches students how to lobby legislation and to get messages across.

Secretary of State Affairs Brandon Sisk praised Martin for mentioning student activist issues.

“I’m glad he encouraged students to get involved in the March 14 rally on the capital,” Sisk said.

Christine Zhu, sophomore psychology major, thought the speech went really well and had a decent turnout.

“I think it’s important for students to get involved,” Zhu said. “Some people mind their own business (on campus) and ASI is important in that it reaches out to those students.”

Martin said it is events like this that help him keep in touch with students.

“I think it’s important I meet the students face to face,” Martin said. “I can communicate with them better this way than with the occasional op-ed for the Hornet.”

With so many young and bright students at Sacramento State, Martin said he is positive about the future of ASI on campus.

He sees today’s speech as an opportunity to spread the word to those who may want to take part in the organization.

“I hope people walk by today and think ASI might be a cool thing to be a part of, and maybe follow in my footsteps,” Martin said.

Sean Keister can be reached at [email protected]