By Nadia Urbina, Feb. 1, 2022

In its first board of directors meeting of the spring semester on Jan. 27, ASI was presented with a certificate of appreciation for its partnership with Cal Poly Pomona’s Clothes Closet and the board discussed updates for the Poly Pantry.

During the meeting, Cheryl Love, coordinator of the Clothes Closet and career counselor, shared her appreciation for ASI’s partnership with the Clothes Closet and presented them with a certificate in appreciation for being partner of the 2021 year.

“Last year, ASI, you helped and supported us as we were trying to find a way to continue to help students during the pandemic when we had to close the Clothes Closet boutique,” said Love during the meeting. “ASI, you stepped up in a major way, you provided us with $35,000 to help us get the clothes program stipend off the ground.”

According to Love, the help provided by ASI helped the Clothes Closet support 600 students last academic year and helped over 250 students through the Clothes Closet stipend program.

“It’s giving money back to students,” said ASI Vice President Derek Sweem. “The relocation was from student fees and the Clothes Closet was selected to receive that chunk of that relocation to give the money back to students and the program they’ve been running.”

In addition to the certificate, a plaque is in the process of being updated to include ASI as the 2021 Clothes Closet partner of the year.

In other business, Sandra Solano, the ASI Poly Pantry manager, shared with the board new updates regarding the expansion of the Poly Pantry and other updates for the spring semester.

The pantry introduced an online component, under development for over a year, that is available through ASI’s website and app where students can order their groceries online and pick them up.

“It’s working really well,” said Solano. “We wanted to do something more convenient for students and ordering online and picking it up is just more convenient for students; instead of having to spend 30 minutes in the pantry shopping, they can do it at the convenience of their home.”

Other updates with the pantry included three new spaces all located in the Bronco Student Center.

The first space, formally known as the Catering Office next to the Games Room, is the Poly Pantry’s distribution center where the pantry will handle all orders and assembly. The second space is where the original Poly Pantry store was located and will now be used to store extra inventory.

Source: ASI (Nicolas Hernandez | The Poly Post)

Solano shared things to look forward to for the pantry such as expanding reach for donations of feminine hygiene products, purchasing refrigerated lockers and continuing its collaboration with the John T. Lyle Center for Regenerative Studies.

“We collaborate with the Lyle center and do volunteer services at the Lyle center once a month,” said Solano. “We learn how to plant, how to seed, how to harvest and it’s really wonderful because it’s a group of people plus the fellows and the staff at the Lyle center. What is grown goes back to the pantry.”

The new updates and space leave a need for more student workers in the pantry, and the pantry plans to hire new students to help with the expansion. Students can apply and find the job listing in ASI’s website.

As for ASI’s agenda this semester, there are no plans of meeting in person for future board of directors’ meetings.

ASI President Prabhat Jammalamadaka shared that ASI plans to continue everything they’ve accomplished last semester such as promoting civic engagement and educating students on legislative bills such as financial aid reform, sustainability and “anything that pops up” for students that ASI can be on their side with.

The next ASI Board of Directors Meeting will be held Feb. 10. Previous meeting agendas and minutes can be found on ASI’s website.

Feature image by Nicolas Hernandez

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