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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Faculty Senate approves excused absence change

Then-sophomore+JaCory+Clark+addresses+the+Senate+about+efforts+to+revise+the+excused+absence+policy+at+a+Student+Senate+on+November+1%2C+2017.+Since+then%2C+Student+Senators+have+continued+to+advocate+for+revisions%2C+and+the+Faculty+Senate+recently+approved+a+rule+adjustment+that+would+include+some+of+the+Student+Senates+proposed+changes.
Photo by Jesse Everett

Then-sophomore Ja’Cory Clark addresses the Senate about efforts to revise the excused absence policy at a Student Senate on November 1, 2017. Since then, Student Senators have continued to advocate for revisions, and the Faculty Senate recently approved a rule adjustment that would include some of the Student Senate’s proposed changes.

The Faculty Senate has voted to amend Student Rule 7 to allow students to use a non-reschedulable job or internship interview as a university-approved excused absence.
In an email sent out to students, Student Body President Amy Sharp said that the proposed change arose from a multi-year effort by the Student Government Association’s Executive Cabinet and Student Senate.
Multiple sessions of the Student Senate had previously passed resolutions calling for the change to be made. Most recently, Student Senate Academic Affairs Chair Jacob Powell presented a bill to be sent to the Faculty Senate in support of amending the rule.
As per current student rules, students typically have to schedule these interviews around class times and tests. If the change is finalized, faculty would be able to excuse students from class attendance and activities as long as the students provide documented proof of the interview.
Sharp also highlighted the efforts of SGA Vice President of Academic Affairs Michael Migaud, Vice President of Municipal Affairs Rohan Sethi, and Student Senate Academic Affairs Chair Jacob Powell — student leaders who spearheaded the effort to lobby the faculty and administration for the change.
The proposed student rule defines the circumstances under which an absence for an interview would be excused: “Mandatory interviews for permanent, full-time employment or full-time internships (including those that are part of a cooperative education program) that have a duration of at least 10 weeks, provided that such interviews are related to the student’s academic program and provided that the interviews are fixed date by employer policy and cannot be rescheduled. A student may not request excused absences for employment or internship interviews for more than one scheduled class meeting in one academic term.”
Additional draft changes to Student Rule 7 include adding presentations at professional conferences and compelling reasons not already defined — as determined by a college’s dean or dean’s designee — to the list of approved excused absences.
The draft rules now proceed to President Michael K. Young for final consideration.

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