Section: News

Student Council discusses COVID-19 testing, Homecoming

The Student Council met on Sunday for the second time this academic year to discuss upcoming changes to the application process of new student organizations and the updated plan for COVID-19 testing. 

Vice President for Student Life Taylor Womack ’24 kicked off the meeting by reminding everyone of the updated change in the application process for new student organizations. Specifically, Womack reiterated that any new organization is required to meet with her and Director of Student Engagement Caleb Young before meeting with the Student Life Committee. The deadline to apply is Oct. 4 at 11:59 p.m. Womack also announced that first-year class elections are over and winners have been notified.  

Safety and Wellness Committee Chairperson Madelin Vandeberg ’25 described the updated COVID-19 protocol. As of May 11, federal funding and delivery of rapid COVID-19 tests ceased for many private institutions across the U.S., including Kenyon. Last academic year, there were COVID-19 tests available in Gund Commons. However, as of this year, Kenyon is no longer offering rapid tests except through the Cox Health and Counseling Center. 

Vandeberg reminded the student body that if they need to test for COVID-19, they can make an appointment at the Health Center to get tested as a part of a full upper respiratory exam. There is also no out-of-pocket charge for a rapid COVID-19 test administered as part of the appointment. Additionally, Vandeberg encouraged students who use at-home tests to still email the Health Center with positive results, and connect with Dean of Student Development Robin Hart Ruthenbeck regarding absences. 

Social Board Representative Lynne Bush ’25 reported that the Social Board held its first official meeting on Sept. 5 and discussed plans for the upcoming semester. There will be a Homecoming Bonfire behind Gund Commons on Sept. 29 from 8-10 p.m. Food trucks will also be on campus starting Sept. 22, and will be accompanied by activities such as tote bag decorating; brunch “add-ons” will begin on Sunday. 

In addition, the Council reviewed a proposed amendment to Article Six Section III of the Student Council bylaws, which was discussed the previous week. The amendment would remove a clause allowing for debt forgiveness for student organizations, and would continue to enforce a mandatory payment plan instead. The Council unanimously voted to approve the amendment. 

Dean of Students Brian Janssen reminded students that there will be a Homecoming wine tasting (available to students who are over 21 years old) and ‘Cooking with Campus Safety’ in the coming weeks. He advised students to look out for an email with further information. 

The next Student Council meeting will be held on Sunday at 7 p.m. in room 302 of Chalmers Library. All students are welcome to attend either in person or remotely. 

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