UNCG Student Government Association President Chelsea R. Boccardo presented the annual SGA State of the Campus address before the SGA Senate on Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013. Here are some of the highlights of her remarks.
Welcome to the Student Government Association's Senate meeting and the spring 2013 State of the Campus Address.
UNCG SGA President Chelsea R. Boccardo. Image credit: Cassidy Norris.
Eckhard Pfeiffer said: Today is either the beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning. Today, we are making history.
In the past semester, we have all played a role in the making of UNCG's history. Whether you're a student, staff, faculty, or administrator, you have made an impact on the story of UNCG. And whether you're a freshman, senior, or super-super-senior, you have left a footprint on this campus. Since the start of the fall 2012 semester, UNCG celebrated many distinguished events including:
During this time, UNCG has also been nationally recognized with many accolades, including Forbes recognizing UNCG as a Best Buy, and the Princeton Review listing UNCG as a best institution for undergraduate education in the country, for the 14th consecutive year.
All of these events and awards prove UNCG's dedication and commitment to access, affordability and excellence to students and our community. We are persistent in pushing the limits to what access in education stands for. We are dedicated to keeping UNCG as affordable as practicable, and we redefine the standards of excellence in and out of the classroom, every day.
Along the journey of success in the past semester, the Student Government Association has also made great strides and accomplishments. In the fall State of the Campus Address, I stated that we were focusing on three core areas: Civil Discourse, Serving the Community, and Advocacy and Education.
It is SGA's purpose to advocate for and address student concerns. SGA will continue to act upon the three areas of service to guide our efforts for the remainder of the year.
Through Civil Discourse and Community Engagement, we will continue to empower our peers to make informed decisions and participate in intellectual discussion.
One of the most exciting things happening in SGA is our strategic efforts to network and build relationships with state legislatures and city council members. Tomorrow, 14 SGA members will be attending the Inaugural North Carolina General Assembly Reception in Raleigh. Executive volunteer, Chris McCracken, is leading this exciting and once-in-a-college-lifetime opportunity.
SGA has also made headway in creating a Freedom of Expression chalkboard on the top floor of the EUC. It is not currently running, but we will be acquiring chalking supplies over the next two weeks. This wall will provide prompt statements for students to respond to and express themselves. After all, college is the place where young people find themselves through personal reflection and expression.
Furthermore, we hope to host more forum discussions for any issues that arise through the semester. The cabinet is also planning outreach events for students to address their concerns with administration.
In our second focus area, SGA will continue our efforts to participate in philanthropy, as our university's motto is service. In collaboration with Staff Senate, we are discussing ways to help out with their Habitat for Humanity house builds over the spring semester.
Senator Mariah Governor, an executive initiative volunteer, will continue to facilitate our Student Group Unity Meetings. The purpose of these meetings is to allow student leaders opportunities to collaborate on programming, while reducing over programming of special events. After identifying issues facing student organizations in event planning last semester, it is our intention to invite more groups to the table. We want to work towards a more collaborative and resourceful planning environment.
To support this environment, SGA is sponsoring two white board-walls being painted on the top level of the EUC for student organizations to post their events. These walls will be formatted as calendars for organizations to visually see when there are days open for events, and what other organizations are hosting. This will also be a space for students to brainstorm ideas for collaboration.
SGA also is exploring a student discount program, for local businesses in the Greensboro community. This program would provide students and graduates of UNCG with further incentivized resources to prepare themselves personally and professionally.
Through our third and last area of focus, we will continually challenge ourselves to promote advocacy and education in everything that we do. As students of UNCG, we support each other in participating in lifelong learning.
We have created Infographs for display on campus explaining how tuition and fees are utilized, and recognizing accomplished faculty members at UNCG.
We await the Board of Governor's approval on the Campus Initiated Tuition and Fee proposals. Some of the allocations of those funds would provide:
Lastly, we hope to establish a formal method or process for students to address their concerns at the university. Although we host forums and students are always welcomed to state their concerns at Senate, students need additional outlets to anonymously and privately converse with SGA. To do so, we hope you will join us at the table of discussion. Students will then be able to participate more easily in the betterment of their own student experience.
This semester, we have set out to do bigger and better things than we ever have before. We are setting new ground for UNCG students.
While we are here, if we are going leave our footprint on this campus, we might as well do something that's deliberate. And if our motto is service, and we plan to live it out, we might as well do something that's philanthropic. And if we continue to strive to redefine excellence, and we are willing to work together, we might as well do something that's outstanding.
And when you're doing something that is deliberate, philanthropic, and above all outstanding you're doing something that is truly admirable you're Doing something bigger altogether.