ASWC demands accountability: The Inaugural Student Finance Committee

Oliver Bineth

In addition to attending school, more than 70 percent of students are also active in the job market, says a study done by Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce. To help students tackle financial struggles, the Associated Students of Whittier College (ASWC) recently set up the Student Finance Committee (SFC) that will investigate where Whittier College student tuition is spent.

ASWC President and founder of SFC, senior Amer Rashid, described the goal of the organization as an entity that organizes students in order to discuss the College budget, pull resources together and provide stronger representation for students at higher levels of administration.

The SFC is open to the entire student body. In fact, according to Rashid, the Committee’s strength lies in the power of community and seeks enthusiastic advocates who are ready to take control in their hands. 

Besides explaining and decoding the complex fiscal language for the pupils, the SFC also endeavors to network with the Weingart Center for Career and Professional Development in order to make student employment easier on and around campus. 

The members of the committee will meet every Tuesday at 5 p.m. in the Senate Office, where they will debate various issues and create propositions regarding finances for the Senate by individual voting. These propositions will then be provided to the College administration, such as the Vice President of Finance James Dunkleman and President Sharon Herzberger through Rashid. This process gives a pragmatic possibility for the student body to influence financial administration. 

According to Rashid, President Herzberger thinks the Financial Committee is a great idea and she is looking forward to the conversations. Dunkelman said that he is looking forward to learn about the committee’s charge and working with the members. 

“Although the Student Finance Committee will not solve the student debt crisis entirely, it is a major first step on a long road, so whoever is [ASWC] President after me can take the next one and so forth,” Rashid said. He firmly believes that we have to undertake this issue multi-dimensionally. “This is what liberal arts education taught us,” Rashid said.

The founding of this committee reflects the College’s trend to promote transparency. Recently, the College has also published its Financial Statement online for the first time, offering students more knowledge of finance than ever before. This offers the student body the ability to make changes within finances, and with the help of the ASWC Senate, they no longer have to do it alone. As the saying goes, “United we stand, divided we fall.”

For more information about the ASWC Senate, the organization has accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, OrgSync and email:

Furthermore, anyone can join the Senate meetings on Monday nights at 7 p.m. in Villalobos or from anywhere as they will be live-streamed online.