by Annie Kuzmanovic
Of all the groups of students dedicating their free time to something beyond just schoolwork, Student Government, an entity of CI’s Associated Students Inc. (ASI), is dedicated to serving students by transforming student voices into positive change. According to their website, Student Government strives to “… serve, represent and advocate for the students of CI on the local, state and national levels”. Such a feat could not nearly be accomplished without the help of Student Government’s senators.
Student Government’s vice president, Isaiah Ball, described the senators as “essentially the representative and contact point for the many different student government populations”. Each senator is given their own portion of student life to represent, such as social justice or commuter services. “They have the ability to write, draft and pass legislation…through the Senate,” said Sara Ruiz, the president of Student Government.
Ball has been able to work closely with the senators from the beginning of the process. “It starts when a senator has an idea for the legislation, which could be related to issues that students have voiced,” he said. “Then (the senator) puts in about 5-10 hours of research, then comes to the Senate.” Ball helps the senators brainstorm tangible steps towards achieving that change.
Across Student Government’s current senators, Ruiz has noticed that they are excited to be working towards solutions for students. “There is a sense of eagerness and readiness to get to work.” Ball has also been amazed by the senators’ enthusiasm for their roles as student leaders. “Passion is a trait that I see in all our senators across the board, which is amazing because I believe that one should be passionate about what they do in order to give it their all,” said Ball.
Ruiz has high hopes that the Senate becomes a significant resource on campus. “I want them to be a mouthpiece for their constituent groups on campus so that we are aware of what the student body is feeling throughout the year,” said Ruiz. “I want them to create a strong foundation and inspire others to run next year. Leadership is also about bringing in new people to carry on the cause.”
Although the Senate is already making progress, they are still in need of two senators in order to complete their panel. One position is the Senator of Alumni, Graduate and Credential students. This senator could potentially work hand in hand with the Advancement Office in order to help engage the alumni of CI. They also have another position, the Senator of Veterans and Non-Traditional students, that has recently become open. “Please reach out to us if you are interested in filling that position!” said Ruiz. She stressed that having a full Student Government staff “…means that students recognize (the entity) as an avenue for change that they can be a part of.”
If you wish to apply for either senator positions, you can find their ASI Entity Eligibility Form on their website at studentgov.csuci.edu. Senators are required to have and keep a cumulative and semester GPA of 2.5, while other volunteers must have a 2.0 GPA. Both senators and volunteers must be in good judicial standing. Senators must also spend five hours in the Student Government office weekly.