GPSC approves Elizabeth Apartments rent increase

By Gus Bode

Three housing rate increases were proposed at the Graduate and Professional Student Council meeting Tuesday.

The GPSC approved a 3 percent rent increase for Elizabeth Apartments, which house single graduate students, that would hike a month’s rent to $574 for its patrons.

GPSC, though, did not support increases at Evergreen Terrace, which accommodates married and domestic partner students and student with children, and University Housing, which includes all other on-campus residencies.


GPSC President Kyle Stevens said the suggested increases to University Housing might be from the increase in utility fees as well as the need for more Resident Assistants in the dorms.

All recommendations made by the Fee Allocation Board were heavily approved.

The Little Grassy Literary Festival received up to $500 for an honorarium for Robert Wrigley and $50 for advertising his April 2-3 visit.

The Cognitive Sciences Graduate Organization requested $750 for a lecture on cognitive dissonance by Thomas Zentall, which will take place on April 10.

The lecture is expected to draw more graduate students than undergraduates, which is why the board recommended supporting the lecture monetarily, said Steven Middleton, vice president of Administrative Affairs.

‘This is the first time these people have requested money from us, so we have an idea what the attendance is like for these lectures,’ said Middleton.

Another lecture, given by Omar Kader on April 13 on counter terrorism, will receive $2,400. The speech is sponsored by the Asian American Heritage Month.


Abed Abukhdair, who represents electrical engineering, said the lecture by the counter terrorism expert is important because of distorted views on the Middle East.

‘Some people don’t think of the Middle East as being Asian, but it is. It’s always excluded and given a negative connotation,’ Abukhdair said.

Stevens also took issue with the SIU Board of Trustees’ special election that will replace former student trustee Demetrous White, who resigned Feb. 12 to focus on his education.

The elections will be held electronically through SIU email accounts today and tomorrow, which Stevens said the school would have control over. Stevens said he thought the idea of an electronic election was odd and improper.

Jason Hills, representing philosophy, shared Stevens’s uncertainty.

‘These kinds of systems, even professionals mess this up a lot,’ Hills said. ‘My concern is when you go from a physical medium to an electronic medium, it becomes suddenly very easy to exploit any vulnerability.’

Despite its concern, GPSC resolved to honor the election and contact USG about getting an election commission started. Technically, Stevens said, without an election commission, the special election is against by-laws.