RyeSAC forces union to find new home

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By Tamsin McMahon

The industrial engineering course union has no place to go next September.

At the end of this school year, the union will be kicked out of their office in Jorgenson Hall because of a new RyeSAC policy, which will make individual departments responsible for providing space for its course union.

RyeSAC will continue to be responsible for finding office space for student groups.

“What we want to see is … the programs be responsible for providing space for course unions,” said RyeSAC campus groups coordinator Leatrice Spevack.  “RyeSAC would be responsible for student groups because they have no where eels to turn.”

The industrial engineering course union, which occupies an office the size of a walk-in closet on the third floor of Jorgenson hall, is the only union that isn’t located within its department area.

The industrial engineering school is housed in East Kerr Hall.  The space the union is in now belongs to RyeSAC and will be given to another student group next year.

Mauriceo Castanheiro, the union’s v.p. academic, is angry RyeSAC didn’t involve the union in the decision-making process.

“If they need [the office space] then we’re going to have to give it to them,” he said.  We’re not going to chain ourselves to the office.”

“[But] we’re supposed to be student representatives and they made the decision without us.  That’s what pisses me off.”

But Spevack said she didn’t think the decision warranted the union’s input or approval.

“As I explained to [the course union] many, many, many times, they’re not being tosses out into the street,” she said.

Rather, the union must write a letter to its program director requesting office space.

But Liping Fang, industrial engineering’s program director said there simply isn’t any space to offer the course union.

“I literally don’t have any space as far as I’m aware of.  I’m also not sure what the procedure would involve.”

Fang said neither the union nor RyeSAC has contacted him about finding new office space.

The industrial engineering course union isn’t the first union to have trouble finding space within its department.

Simon Pereria, president of the aerospace engineering course union, has been trying to find an office in the mechanical engineering department for three years, but said his union has been without an office since the early 1990s.

“People like to bounce you around and they all have their own agendas.  Unfortunately, students aren’t very high on that agenda,” Pereria said.

With no office space available, the union only has a bulletin board.

It’s a situation Castanheiro doesn’t want to see happen to the industrial engineering course union.  “We’ll move, but we won’t leave,” he said.

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