The University of Rhode Island’s Student Senate began their meeting by voting for a grant for this year’s Hempfest.

The Students for a Sensible Drug Policy requested a total of $8,000 for their 15th annual Hempfest. The money is going to support various bands and events taking place on the Quadrangle. President Patrick Shea made sure to mention that the point of Hempfest is not to be a political event or to support any kind of political process. Instead, the goal of Hempfest is to open the campus up to the debate and to educate students and staff.

Student Senate also voted to approve the new Orthodox Christian Fellowship club as an unfunded student organization. The goal of the club is to create an environment for Orthodox Christians to be able to go and meet. The organization currently has a priest who comes to campus every couple of weeks. They hope to “strengthen ties between students of the Orthodox Christian Faith, and to further cooperation with other Christian organizations with similar aims,” according to their mission statement.

Student Senate deliberated over the bill to change the Memorial Union Board of Directors from a funded student organization to an unfunded student organization. Senate voted in favor of making the Memorial Union Board of Directors unfunded. The club was recognized in 2015 as a funded organization, but this year Student Organization Advisory Review Committee (SOARC) decided that this should not be funded by student tax.

The liaison elections also took place,  opening the elections for representatives for the College of Arts and Sciences, Engineering and Environment and Life Sciences. Senate elected Darien Strassfield to be the representatives for College of Arts and Sciences. Strassfield pledged her support to want to reach out to students in Arts and Sciences through social media.  Senate then elected Tony Messina as for the College of Engineering. Messina said he wanted to make sure the students voices are heard during new the new process of an engineering building. Senate also elected Victoria Russo for College of Environment and Life Sciences.