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The Graduate Student Senate discusses elections at Walter Hall on Tuesday, April 2, 2019. (FILE)

Student Senate: OUPD Chief Powers presents on community engagement

The police chief of the Ohio University Police Department presented to Student Senate Wednesday on the what the department has been doing to further engage with the community.

The department has launched the successful Start By Believing campaign with survivor Brie Sivy that empowers sexual assault survivors. The department has already done a couple public presentations, and the program has been nationally recognized in San Diego, California.

In an effort to encourage more dialogue between the department and community members, OUPD started the Poker Chip Challenge. Each officer is given 100 chips with their name and badge number on it, and people are challenged to talk to officers to collect chips.  

The department also updated Student Senate about crime on campus. About 80% of all crime on campus is somehow related to alcohol, Andrew Powers, OUPD chief, said.

“By enforcing alcohol laws we hope to reduce other crime that comes from it,” Powers said.

The meeting continued with a presentation about Bobcathon by Lindsay Carr, campus outreach director of the fundraiser. 

Bobcathon is a year-long fundraiser for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio.  Athens County was one of the top 10 counties in central Ohio served by Ronald McDonald House in 2015, and still is in the top 10 today.

There are events throughout the year that students can volunteer for, but the biggest event is the annual 12-hour dance competition. This year, the competition is on Feb. 15, 2020 in Baker Ballroom.

Senate also passed a bill allowing President Lydia Ramlo to sign a letter regarding OU’s gun policy. 

Ramlo will be signing the letter with Student Senate presidents from other universities in Ohio, and it will be sent to Ohio legislators in response to the Dayton shooting.

In a poll conducted in 2016, student senate found that 68% of students on campus were against concealed carry on campus and were in favor of gun control.

Student senate also approved a bill in support of installing solar panels on more buildings, a bill to promote student safety and a bill against e-scooters on campus. The body also passed a resolution to appoint a Senator to the Women’s Affairs commission.


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