SGA announces new outreach program, inaugurates ambassadors
Last week, the Student Government Association pledged 12 new ambassadors for their new program intended to advocate for students and their interests.
The induction ceremony was hosted by SGA’s director for outreach, Jordan Underwood and Vice President Tyler Luc. During the ceremony, Underwood discussed the responsibilities of the SGA ambassadors and their future in this administration.
“The ambassadors are the students that essentially hold and demonstrate dedication and service to the student body and the values of SGA,” Underwood said.”That happens by understanding bylaws and the constitution and being able to represent students who don’t have a voice for themselves.”
Among the 12 new ambassadors was freshman psychology major, Bryson Mansfield, who joined the program after seeing their successful efforts in establishing a higher minimum wage for workers on campus.
“They want change. They want to make our community stronger, and that’s something I find very unique,” Mansfield said.
Mansfield also said he will fulfill his duties by talking to students directly and providing a more comfortable environment to get more engagement from them.
While not present at the ceremony, SGA President Benjamin Rizk said he hopes the program will help SGA present a more human side to students.
“We want ambassadors going from classroom to classroom, or registering people to vote, promoting ticket sales, and stuff for games,” Rizk said. “They’re supposed to show the presence of SGA all across campus in whatever capacity they can.”
Responsibilities aside, the ceremony was a big day for many of the inductees. Mansfield said he is excited to be a part of the program, and he is looking forward to working with SGA’s leadership to improve the organization’s outreach.
“It was an amazing feeling,” Mansfield said after the inauguration. “It’s an exciting moment to know that I am with a room full of powerful people, people who have great mindsets.”
What are SGA ambassadors?
A new addition to the current administration, SGA ambassadors will advocate for student issues across campus.
Underwood conceived the ambassador program to provide students with a more approachable avenue to get their voices heard by SGA. The program is intended to restore the prestige that SGA once had by allowing smoother communication between students and senators, Underwood said.
“My goal for this program is to boost engagement on what SGA does,” Underwood said. “I want people to be aware of the work we’re doing.”
With the ambassador program, Underwood said he envisions the creation of more leadership opportunities on campus.
“Anywhere you go, there’s always a limit, and I wanted to provide some more room for people to go out of their comfort zone and become a leader,” Underwood said.
Underwood said that in previous administrations, it could be challenging for students to speak directly to SGA and claimed that ambassadors will provide more opportunities for those whose voices are often silenced.
“In the past, it’s been viewed as some sort of hierarchy. It’s like, we’re higher than you, better than you, and I just don’t like that. We’re all students. We all pay the same thing to attend the school,” Underwood said. “Everyone should be treated on the same level.”
Along with more student interaction, Underwood envisions the program will help expedite the learning process for senators during new administrations.
When asked about the criterion for ambassador applicants, Underwood said he has based it on his motto: to be fearlessly authentic.