Now that the votes are in, the new Student Government Association members are getting ready to carry out their plans to increase student organization participation.
Jesslan Sharp, the new SGA president, said it is her top priority.
“Since I’ve been here as a freshman, the SGA has went forward so much, and we have made leaps and bounds. I’m excited to be handed the torch to keep pushing us forward and keep us going in the right direction,” Sharp said.
Before becoming president, she served as vice president of the Student Senate. Sharp said she hopes to make sure all student organizations know that her office is open to them; she said she plans to find innovative ways to let everyone know that the SGA is there to help them.
“No matter what organization you’re a part of, I want us all to come together,” Sharp said. By working with the different branches of the SGA, and including more diverse organizations in the Student Senate, she said she hopes that more students will be included in SGA’s functions and its impact will grow.
Dylan Jones, who will begin his second term as vice president of organizational affairs in the fall, said he shares Sharp’s vision of pushing the SGA forward. Jones said that he spent the last year really getting to know his job, and he is excited to make some changes.
“I want to build more on what I’ve learned and connect with as many organizations as possible,” he said. Currently, the SGA represents 108 active student organizations on campus, and Jones wants to increase that number.
He plans to do so by contacting each department individually to learn which organizations they work with and try to get them involved with the SGA. Jones also wants to increase the amount of allocation money available to organizations, which helps reimburse fees for organization events.
Aside from increasing SGA involvement, he also plans to unify the organizations by planning community service projects that several organizations can work together on. Currently, Jones is in contact with United Way, working to find ways to get organizations involved in a common project.
“If you’re never changing, you’re never bettering yourself,” he said.
Hayden Clay, the new vice president of the Student Senate, wants to make the Senate more accessible and inclusive to the organizations it represents. Clay said he wants to continue to make the code of law more clear and concise, but he plans to change how the legislations are presented to organization leaders.
“I want to email the minutes of Senate to all organization presidents, so organizations are aware of any new legislation and any changes to the constitution,” he said.
By sending the information directly to the organizations, it will make it easier for them to stay up to date with what the SGA is doing.
Clay said this will increase the Senate’s visibility and will coincide with the plans Sharp and Jones have to encourage involvement between the SGA and campus organizations.
Clay said emphasizing the accountability of senators when writing resolutions will also help the SGA’s influence. Since resolutions are the Senate’s direct voice to the university’s administration, it is important that they be handled seriously.
The SGA serves to represent the student body and works with organizations and administration to resolve issues on campus. One of the easiest ways to get involved with the SGA is by attending Student Senate meetings, which are held on Mondays. The next meeting is at 6 p.m. March 28 in the TMB auditorium.