Student Senate passed a Pronoun Resolution at its General Assembly meeting Monday, which would affect how students choose their preferred pronoun and name through Webster and Sakai.
Senate initially voted on the resolution at its General Assembly Feb. 20, but it did not pass. Student Body President Jenna Dellaria said she believes the original resolution was not completely clear.
“I don’t think [the senators] were necessarily against the resolution, it was just more of, ‘We don’t really know what this is and how it can really [be] implemented or do benefit for the university,’” Dellaria said.
Dellaria said the Pronoun Resolution was then changed to include clauses that a similar resolution from the previous year, the Preferred Name Resolution, contained.
According to Dellaria, the Preferred Name Resolution was passed by Senate last year but could not be implemented after the Registrar’s Office voiced concerns about leaving the preferred name option as an open field.
“We didn’t know how to go about that right away, without people maybe not taking it as seriously,” Dellaria said.
However, Dellaria said the Pronoun Resolution goes hand-in-hand with the Preferred Name Resolution to further that initiative along.
“[Administrators] could choose to do this as a solo option, or they could combine it and be like, ‘Now we have two aspects to work on, other colleges are already doing this,'” Dellaria said. “‘How could we do it here?'”
Two professors as well as students from Common Ground, a gay-straight student alliance organization, came to Monday’s general assembly to share why they thought it was necessary for the Pronoun Resolution to pass.
Alysen Newton, a member of Common Ground, said the Pronoun Resolution is important for Bradley to grow as an institution and be accommodating to every student.
“Part of [Bradley’s] five-year plan is becoming a more diverse and inclusive campus,” Newton, vice president of diversity and inclusion, said. “I think [the Pronoun Resolution] is a wonderful step in that direction. I think there’s a lot of growth that needs to happen for Bradley’s campus with race and with sexuality and with gender.”
Since the Pronoun Resolution passed, Senate will give it to Vice President for Student Affairs Nathan Thomas, and he will deliver the resolution to administrators for further consideration.
“It’s just kind of all up to administration with how they want to do it,” Dellaria said. “Just because it was passed doesn’t mean that exactly what we passed is going to happen.”
Despite what happens, Newton and Dellaria said they are happy with the results and hope Bradley will grow to be more inclusive.
“Society is changing,” Newton said. “People outside the norm are becoming accepted and comfortable with themselves, and so it’s time to embrace that and [stop making] them feel not normal.”