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StudCo discusses year

Council plans to continue UVAirBus, will try extending Observatory Hill Dining Hall hours

Student Council held a Council-wide meeting last night in Newcomb Ballroom where committees summarized their accomplishments and previewed their upcoming initiatives for the remainder of the semester.

Fourteen committees gave presentations, covering a wide range of initiatives - from the Athletic Affairs Committee's distribution of almost 6,000 water bottles to students at the Virginia Military Institute football game in September to the Building and Grounds Committee's Don't Sign It campaign to encourage students to hesitate before jumping to sign a lease for an off-Grounds apartment.

Council members also discussed new initiatives, in particular the upcoming trial run of expanded dinner hours for Observatory Hill Dining Hall. During this trial run - the time frame for which has not yet been established - the dining hall will prolong closing for an additional hour and evaluate student participation during these later dining hours.

"We've extended O-Hill hours from 8 o'clock to 9 o'clock, which is going to be implemented in the next couple weeks," Student Life Committee Co-Chair Mary McGuirk said. "They're going to see how many students take advantage of that extra hour in order to [evaluate whether to] keep it permanently."

The Student Life Committee also is working to execute its Umbrella Share program, which was first proposed earlier this semester. Council hopes to receive assistance from the Honor Committee for funding this initiative, which would leave umbrellas across Grounds for students to use and return.

The Honor Committee has "a campaign coming up that they want to advertise for," McGuirk said. "Their incentive to help fund us is so their logo could be advertised on our umbrellas."

Students would be held accountable through the honor code to return the umbrellas, Student Life Committee Co-Chair Courtney Lester said. A system is being considered in which students would sign an umbrella out using their computing IDs.

The Student Life Committee also plans to continue the UVAirBus program for Thanksgiving, Winter and Spring Breaks. With several weeks remaining to buy tickets, UVAirBus has already broken even for Thanksgiving Break - a change from last year, when the program did not break even after the end of the sales period.

Other initiatives launched this semester include the Hoos for Hire website, where students can offer their services to Charlottesville residents.

"It's basically a Craigslist where U.Va. students post abilities they have, anything from babysitting to raking leaves," Community Affairs Committee Co-Chair Whit Hunter said. "Community members get quality work and students get a flexible and enjoyable means of employment."

There are several other ongoing Student Council programs, which include the Lighten' Up campaign to improve lighting near off-Grounds residences, the extension of Greenberry's hours in Alderman Library to 11:30 p.m. and the promotion of Disabilities Awareness week, taking place now.


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