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USG committee chairs reflect on semester’s progress

Caitlin Limestahl / The Daily Princetonian 

In the final Undergraduate Student Government (USG) meeting of the semester, the Senate heard reports from five committee chairs on the work they’ve done thus far and what they hope to accomplish in the fall.

University Student Life Committee Chair Alisha Somani ’23 discussed how her team has furthered its mission of supporting students who are learning in a mostly virtual semester.


She reported that the committee also made progress on the goals of the newly established Disability Task Force, which presented disability awareness training to eating club officers, advocated for the expansion of the ASL program at Princeton, and worked with the Office of Disability Services to better address disability during first-year orientation.

Mayu Takeuchi ’23, chair of the Sustainability Committee, spoke about the work the committee has done this semester, which included supporting and publicizing student initiatives, working with the University to integrate sustainability into its decision-making, and coordinating University-wide programming.

The Sustainability Committee is hosting a town hall on Tuesday, April 27 to discuss campus sustainability once normal operations fully resume. It is also working with Housing and Real Estate Services and the Office of Sustainability to help students discard unwanted clothing or food during the move-out period.

Academics Chair Austin Davis ’23 presented on the ways his committee has made progress on its goals for the semester. The committee has completed the first draft of a model proposing what mixed concentrations could look like, aided in the expansion of the ASL program, and highlighted students’ academic concerns throughout the semester.

In the fall, Davis said he hopes to revisit the possibility of a retroactive pass/D/fail option and look further into the intersection between students’ mental health and Princeton academics.

Campus and Community Affairs Committee Chair Lehman Montgomery ’22 discussed the work his committee has done to strengthen the relationship between students and the Princeton town community.


He pointed to Tigers in Town events that have brought students out of the Orange Bubble and stimulated local businesses. While it is undetermined whether Tigers in Town will continue into the fall semester, Montgomery said it was a possibility, in addition to a proposed Paw Points program that could allow students to use meal swipes at local restaurants.

William Gu ’23 chairs the Social Committee, which is in charge of organizing in-person and virtual social events for students. He spoke about the results of the 2020 USG Spring Social Engagement Survey, which guided the decision to cancel Spring Lawnparties and focus on expanding Tigers in Town and free merchandise for students.

The Social Committee was recently able to host in-person movie nights in McCosh Courtyard and will distribute picnic blankets and frisbees at the upcoming movie nights on April 30 and May 1. The frisbees are Princeton-branded and were ordered from jaZams, a toy store on Nassau Street.

The Senate also confirmed Charles An ’22 as the new TigerApps Chair. An is a computer science concentrator who has worked on TigerApps in the past.

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Senate meetings — open to all members of the undergraduate student body — occur via Zoom at 8:30 p.m. ET each Sunday. The link to join the meeting can be found in the weekly USG newsletter, which is sent to all undergraduate students.

Regular meetings are set to resume in September.