A group of four students sit around the table with papers and chocolate wrappers sprayed across it. They’re devising a plan. With each student possessing a certain set of skills that will include effectively tackling academic issues, coordinating event plans and juggling administrative initiatives on the Southern Utah University camps. They’re the Executive Council for SUU Student Association (SUUSA).
Representing the 8,000 students at SUU, these Student Association officers play a substantial role in shaping student life on campus and at the highest levels of education and administration in the state. As the primary voice for students, SUUSA officers are a collective representation of who T-Bird students are.
But who are these students collectively representing the entire SUU student body? Who are the faces behind the voting posters that saturated hallways and sidewalks last spring semester?
Read below for an introduction of each member and what you can expect from them for the 2013-2014 academic year.
President Jeffrey Hertig, a senior accounting major from Bountiful Utah, his education began when he found scrap paper with a SUU logo on a sidewalk, now a few years later that piece of paper has led him to be the SUUSA president. But his dreams for SUU are much more extensive than a scrap of paper.
“I am representing the student voice at the highest levels the University can offer and I want to represent the student body as effectively as possible,” said Hertig, who is a member of the SUU Board of Trustees.
He added, “I will mingle with students at events, in classes, in the hallways, in line at the Post Office, but I can’t meet everyone. So come to me with questions, concerns, or problems. I want to help as much as I can, but I can’t do that if you don’t tell me what you need.”
Initiatives: utilize the Sharwan Smith Student Center more effectively for student use; and effectively represent the students for the new president search.
The single female voice in entire the executive SUUSA cast, Bailey Bowthorpe, senior communication major, is vice president of academics. Coordinating the efforts of all academic senators (each college has one representative senator), Bowthorpe intends to be a public affairs practitioner after graduation so her current calling is perfect for this gal from Holladay, Utah.
“This year the senators are very focused on meeting academic initiatives in their respective colleges,” stated Bowthorpe. “The senators and I are going to ensure that we’re communicating with students so if there is a concern it can be met.”
Bowthorpe went on to say that she works closely with administration and the Faculty Senate and problems can be solved, from getting a new class to a concern with a professor. “Student’s just need to come talk to us and voice their concerns,” she added.
Initiatives: revise the student constitution, and successfully represent the student body and their academic concerns.
The self-declared redneck of the group, Caleb White, a junior majoring in business finance from Delta, Utah, may be the vice president of clubs and student leadership but according to him “I’m a red head and left-handed, so basically I am one in a million.”
Hoping to bolster student involvement within SUU’s 156 clubs and organizations, White will focus on increasing the quality of the types of clubs on campus. “Most years we see some really great activities at the beginning of the year, but they taper off by the end of the year. I want all clubs to continue strong activities throughout the entire year. I am here to support the clubs.”
Initiatives: create a new financial reward system for clubs and organizations; focus on the quality, not quantity, of clubs.
From parties to celebrations, Lance Fredric Lowry is the man for all things events. As the vice president of activities, he will be keeping the celebrated annual events for SUU students, but his goal is to “stick with the popular, annual events and amplify and improve making each event even better.”
A communication major from Draper, Utah, Lowry stated that his other goal for his time in office is to create effective marketing strategies to ensure students are informed early and often about campus events.
“We really want to focus on types of marketing that will be effective for students,” said Lowry. “Another goal is to establish effective feedback so that we can know if events can be improved and then operate off of that feedback.”
Initiatives: establish effective marketing strategies; improve and amplify traditional events; partner with clubs and organizations for each activity; and create efficient feedback tactics.
SUUSA 2013-2014 Vision: By standing on our predecessor's shoulders, we amplify and advance the role of SUUSA by engaging and benefiting all students, empowering and expanding student advocacy throughout the university and state, and establishing Southern Utah University as the premier student experience.