What plans are in store for students next school year?
As student body elections wrapped up last week, new ideas will be coming into the Student Government office this fall. Matthew Friedmann, the elected Student Body President, and Kylee Ardnt, the elected Student Body Vice President, are busy planning what they want to accomplish when students return to campus.
Friedmann and Arndt first discussed their platform which consists of three ideas: student health, student advocacy and student pride.
Ardnt explained the student health portion of their platform which will ensure the well-being of students. Within this category, some of the plans Friedmann and Arndt have are accessible STI testing provided to students and healthy meals available for students at the dining centers.
The next portion of their platform is dedicated to student pride. Friedmann explained part of this idea as “showcasing students work and achievements.”
Friedmann described an idea of Bison Talk which would be like a Ted Talk where students could showcase their work and faculty could showcase their research to the student body and community once a year.
Another aspect to their student pride section would be to reconstruct the campus calendar which Friedmann and Arndt see isn’t utilized by students often. Friedman said that their plan is to make the campus calendar one central location where students go to find when athletic, performing arts and other campus events are happening. Friedmann and Arndt’s overall plan is to increase the attendance to these events.
The last section of their platform is on student advocacy as Ardnt said student costs and wages will be advocated for within this section.
Friedmann explained one idea in this portion of their platform includes a commencement closet which will provide commencement robes for students to rent for free. Students will also be able to donate their robes after they graduate for others to use.
“We wanted to eliminate barriers some students may face,” Friedmann said when discussing the commencement project.
Though Friedmann and Ardnt are disappointed that the commencement closet will not be used at the end of this school year due to the graduation being postponed, they look forward to the closet being used in the future.
When discussing student engagement on campus, Friedmann said there might be some lost momentum in the fall when students return, but said, “…we plan on looking at every opportunity to engage those students.”
Even though Friedmann and Arndt couldn’t campaign like they usually would have because of the campus closure, both look forward to meeting with students once campus is reopened.
“We’re really excited to connect with the students,” Friedmann said. “We will make up the time missed.”
Friedmann and Arndt also talked about student organizations and how to get students more involved on and around campus.
“We have to find the students where they are.” Friedmann said, adding, “Student organizations expect students to find them.”
Once campus is reopened, Friedmann and Arndt plan on visiting all of the student organizations they haven’t met to introduce themselves and explain their plans on increasing student involvement.
Friedmann and Arndt then discussed their thoughts on student engagement towards Student Government. Both see students continuously interested in learning about Student Government and advertising their events on the listserv.
“We see the work as very impactful on students,” Friedmann said when describing what Student Government does for the student body.
Though Friedmann and Arndt see students are interested in the work they do, they would like to strengthen the student involvement as they want more candidates in student body elections. “We see that as our responsibility,” Friedmann said as they plan ahead.
As their transition into office approaches, both Friedmann and Arndt said that the transition is going well despite the changes they have had to face with campus being closed.
“It is very easy to stay connected,” Arndt said as she discussed how they are conducting interviews and continuing to work together. Arndt explained that during these times, it shows how well students can adapt to different circumstances.