“What can we do and how can we get it done? Action is the theme, actually it is take action” said Brian Peterson, student body president. Peterson and Andrick Lewis, student body vice president, plan to have an “Administration of Action.” They will not just sit around.
Students will notice the presence of two new, yet familiar faces this year. Peterson and Lewis have both served on the Student Government Association (SGA) Senate. Peterson is an accounting major who came to UCF in 2004 from Cooper City, Florida. He began his time in SGA during his freshman year with a seat on the Senate. He continued to serve on numerous committees and became Senate president for two years before running for student body president. Lewis is a marketing major who came to UCF in 2005 from Miami. He held numerous positions on campus including a member of the O-Team, a resident assistant, Late Knights volunteer, UCF President’s Leadership Council, and now the vice president of the student body.
This team, known as Peterson and Andrick, believes their past experience will help them execute their plan of action. Peterson and Andrick created their campaign platform directly from their experience with students. Peterson was able to have contact with student organizations while serving on the Senate. Lewis had more direct contact with students from being involved in a multitude of campus activities. The students they came in contact with offered input about what they felt needed to be accomplished on campus. Peterson and Andrick gathered information by meeting with students one-on-one, interviewing, and having community forums where they could discuss issues, ideas, and concerns while getting feedback from Peterson and Andrick.
Meetings and discussions with students allowed Peterson and Andrick to compose a set of goals that focus on academics, campus life and students. The goal surrounding academics involves individual colleges and meeting with deans and departments relaying student issues to them and asking them what SGA can do to increase the academic performance of students. Peterson and Andrick plan to help diversify campus life programs and recognize sport teams such as men’s or women’s soccer or golf teams. The most important goal for Peterson and Andrick involves students.
Peterson and Andrick are initiating ways of keeping in touch with students this year. Communication with students is their “big platform promise.” They devote two hours a week at a table outside or downstairs in the Student Union, for students to ask questions, share their concerns, or just say hi. In addition, they will be driving the SGA golf cart around campus and asking students if they want a ride to class. This is another way to connect with students and ask, “What can SGA do for you?” Peterson and Andrick encourage students to stop by the SGA office whenever they have a question, comment or concern. “If I can’t answer the question, I will find someone who can,” says Peterson.
They have not forgotten the basis of UCF. They have included the UCF Creed in their endeavors.
• Integrity: Peterson and Andrick, as well as their cabinet, are in their positions to make UCF a better place for students.
• Scholarship: SGA plans to focus students’ attention on academics and working through the challenge of the possibility of more budget cuts. Study Union was one option that came from the discussion.
• Community: The focus is on the community and allowing students voices to be heard. This year, SGA and students will stay connected.
• Creativity: They have come up with new ideas on communicating with students. They have also focused on saving money and not cutting out important activities.
• Excellence: “Everything we do . . . we try and do the best we can for students,” said Peterson and Andrick.
When asked what Peterson and Andrick want students to remember most, they both offered something different. Not surprising, the answer was focused on the student body. Peterson responded with, “I want students to look back and say that this was the year that SGA listened to my concerns and they actually did something about them.” Andrick said, “It would be nice for a freshman to say my first year at UCF was amazing. I remember that year when Brian and Andrick were in office, I felt as though I learned and gained something more than just my education.”
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