Sophomore sociology major Halle Koonce came to the SGA Forum on Thursday looking to get more involved on campus.

“I came because I applied to be the representative for the School of Natural and Social Science and I had an interview this past Tuesday,” Koonce said. “I really wanted to know more about the position and I wanted to know more about what SGA is all about.”

Koonce became interested in SGA because of her post-graduation plans.

“I wanted to be a part of something bigger on campus,” she said. “Currently I’m not a part of any organization, and I want to be a part of something bigger. In the future, I do plan to actually work with the government, so getting a start in student government would kind of prepare me for the career that I want.”

The forum was held in place of the usual general business meeting at 3 p.m. in the Library Orientation Room in the Eunice and James L. West Library. Besides Blen Hussain and Connor Parish, all of the spring 2019 SGA members took a turn presenting their accomplishments for the year, explaining the responsibilities for their position, sharing advice, and answering audience questions.

SGA President Alyssa Hutchinson said the event had a good turnout.

“Everyone that was interested in being on SGA came,” Hutchinson said. “I’m sure it was nice for them to see what is expected and where things could go. I also think it was a great opportunity for our SGA members to show themselves off, but also to learn what it is like to speak in front of a group of people.”

Hutchinson, who will be returning as president in the fall, shared a glimpse of next semester.

“SGA is going into HD, high definition,” she said. “So if you don’t know my last name is Hutchinson, Karen’s last name is Duarte-Escobar, so president and vice president.”

The other returning members of SGA plan to take on new positions for the fall semester. Head representative Duarte-Escobar will become vice president. Secretary Alison Baron will become senior representative. Freshmen representative Lexi Barlow will become secretary.

However, several SGA positions are open since a big group of representatives aren’t returning for the fall 2019 semester due to graduation and busy schedules: Jaqueline Rodriguez, Finn Le, Kaylia Brown, Lukien Shermeta, Luis Santillan, Hussain, Parish, Zack Lanham, Anahita Keer, and Lynzie Moore.

Several of these representatives provided advice to students wanting to get involved in SGA.

Keer, who is stepping down from her treasurer position, talked about how she still plans to participate in SGA in ways that are less time consuming.

“You don’t have to be a part of SGA to be active,” Keer said. “Students can be involved in the meetings and the different programs that SGA has.”

Moore, the graduating vice president, talked about how joining SGA after the Block 16 protest in the spring of 2018 helped her grow as a person.

“It’s easy to complain and get mad about things,” Moore said. “If you just stop complaining and listen to people explain why things are the way they are you can grow so much.”

Hutchinson said she was proud of how the SGA members performed at the forum and would like to do a forum again next year.

“I definitely think a forum of some kind where we get to sit in front of everyone and show them what we’ve done is a great idea,” Hutchinson said. “I’d like to refine how that happens, but I think something like this is important to do every year.”

SGA will have its next general business meeting 3 p.m. Thursday in the SGA Chambers in Sid Richardson.

International Representative Finn Le talks about her year in SGA.
Photo by Hannah Onder

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