Government relations officer addresses TSG meeting before Harrisburg rally

TSG will bring students to Harrisburg tomorrow, to rally for higher education funding.

Ken Lawrence, Jr, addressed students at the Temple Student Government General Assembly meeting today, Jan. 30, to ask them to support state funding for Temple.

Lawrence, the senior vice president for government, community and public affairs, asked students not attending the Pennsylvania Association of State-related Students rally in Harrisburg on tomorrow, Jan. 31, to contact elected officials to promote the cause.

“Our funding is not a sure thing,” Lawrence, a 1995 Temple alumnus, said. “The only way that we’re going to be able to beat this back is for legislators to know that there’s people out there that care about higher education.”

“I don’t want to see Temple change. I don’t want to see us become a private university,” he added.

PASS brings together student representatives Lincoln University, Penn State University, University of Pittsburgh and Temple to advocate for higher education funding from the commonwealth. TSG Vice President of External Affairs Elliot Griffin is currently the PASS executive director, while Lawrence is the Temple administration liaison for the group.

Lawrence also asked students to sign up for Temple Advocates Legislative Outreach Network, or TALON.

“We make taking action very easy,” Lawrence said.

TSG Treasurer Michael Montalbano asked Lawrence why the Harrisburg rally, as well as rallies in the past, have typically been scheduled on Tuesdays, given Temple students typically have longer classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Lawrence described the scheduling as accommodating to legislative sessions.

“The rallies would be Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. They would never be scheduled for Thursday. The reason why is: That’s when the legislature is in session,” Lawrence said. “Tuesday is actually the best day because, on Monday, [legislators] don’t come into session until late. So lots of times they’re coming from their home districts. They don’t get to Harrisburg until 1 o’clock, 2 o’clock.”

“[Legislators] go directly in session, then they stay over on Monday night, so they’re there Tuesday. Lots of times session is canceled on Wednesday…they’re out of there by 10 o’clock,” Lawrence said.

Meanwhile, TSG Student Body President Colin Saltry discussed his Jan. 24 meeting with Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Assessment Dr. Jodi Levine Laufgraben, and a representative from Computer Services to address students’ problems with Self-Service Banner.

Laufgraben and Computer Services will address the TSG General Assembly on March 19 to talk to students more in detail about Banner.

TSG Chief of Staff David Lopez announced that applications are available for the TU Nation election committee.

Amelia Brust can be reached at

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