Parlez-Vous SGA? SGA column
This has been an extraordinary year for me. It truly has been an honor to serve as the President of the Student Body. I hope that students, faculty and administration feel there has been a strong student voice this year, someone who advocated for the entire student body and does not shy away from the tough decisions. I can say without a doubt that this year I have grown not only as a leader but as a person. This position will hold a special place in my heart for the rest of my life.
Now, I would like to take a moment to thank people who have been working everyday to make the Student Government Association what it is today.
First, my executive team. Ethan Ward, vice president for student affairs. Ward’s position involves planning Assumption’s favorite events: Midnight Madness and Duck Day. Ward has also been an instrumental part of advocating the students’ opinions to administration this year. He is a great team member who brings a lot of laughter to the office and makes sure everyone feels welcome to come and voice their concerns.
Next is Michael Carpentier, vice president for academic affairs. Carpentier has been a committed representative to the students in all matters relating to academics. He has led the change in library hours, advocated paid internships for class credit and added many courses for students to take. He has also represented the students very well by sitting on the faculty senate.
Next we have Jess Daley, vice president for financial affairs. Daley was new to SGA this year, although you wouldn’t know it. She has come into her role very nicely. Her primary responsibility is to control and monitor where the student activity fee goes. Throughout the year she has held clubs accountable for their budgets and made sure they have spent their money in the most responsible way. She can also hold her own on an executive team where she is the only female. We commonly refer to her as “one of the boys.”
Finally, there is Brian Dixon, senate speaker. Dixon has literally been the glue for SGA this year. He has kept SGA running smoothly, making sure everyone is on top of their task. Dixon has also been a great support system. He has always been the first person to offer a helping hand and often makes my life a lot easier. I am very grateful for my executive team and will miss them next year, although I know we will stay in touch.
I would like to thank our advisor Eric Swindle. He has been one of the best advisors I have ever had while being a part of a student organization. Swindle understands that the purpose of clubs and organizations is to allow students to grow and do something they are passionate about. He has also been a great mentor, always pushing me to do better and looking at the big picture.
Next, I would like to thank Dr. Catherine WoodBrooks and Dean Conway Campbell. Over the past year we have worked closely together on a wide range of issues. Through each meeting, they were always very receptive and genuinely cared about what I had to say. It has been great working with such wonderful administrators. While they are administrators, they served a much larger role for me: they were educators and mentors. They have taught me the importance of holding such a high position. They pushed me to get the feedback of the entire student body, and when I did, they listened. They helped me grow as a person and a leader and I will be forever grateful.
It has been such a privilege to have worked with such great people; however, the greatest joy of the job for me has been meeting so many unique and talented students. Serving as president has always been about serving the student body, hearing what they have to say and then fighting for them to the best of my ability. I hope the students feel they have been well represented this year.
In closing, I cannot stress enough that while I may be leaving, the fight carries on. We must continue the journey of speaking up and making this college the place we want it to be. Scripture says, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62). We cannot stop now. We must move forward. If we don’t now, then when? If not us, then who?