For the past six weeks the new WSA cabinet has been working hard to represent student interests on WMU’s campus through things like the Bike Hub proposal adopted at the WSA’s third meeting. However, some students on campus are unaware of exactly who represents them as a part of the WSA. To that end, the WSA cabinet members were asked a few questions about themselves. Their answers have been compiled into a profile below.
President and Vice President:
President Joe Sanchez and Vice President Jessica Polling were elected in the spring of 2018. Sanchez is a senior student studying aviation management while Polling is a junior majoring in global and international studies and family studies. In an interview conducted after the second WSA meeting of this year, both stated that their goal was to increase campus awareness of and participation in the WSA.
Academic Affairs Chair:
Samantha Hack, the WSA academic affairs chair, is a senior biology student. As the academic affairs chair, she meets with the university’s vice president for academic affairs to discuss things like the grading scale, tuition, and registration. The thing she likes most about WMU is the atmosphere of community, saying that, “This general attitude allows students to easily form valuable connections between their peers and faculty that can have profound impacts on their social lives and education.”
Community Involvement Chair:
Matthew Kornas, the WSA community involvement chair, is a senior dual-majoring in biomedical sciences and general psychology. For him, the best thing about WMU is how it helped him to grow as a person, he wrote in an email. “My favorite thing about Western is how its community members (student, faculty, etc.) have changed me as a person. I feel that I’ve become a more confident, outgoing, and successful individual because of the relationships I’ve had the pleasure of building with these people.” His hope for his time on the cabinet is to extend WMU’s community impact to make WMU an even more positive element in the greater Kalamazoo community.
Diversity and Inclusion Chair:
Marshall A. Kilgore, a political science major in his sophomore year, serves as the diversity and inclusion chair. When asked what his favorite thing about WMU is, he responded “The diversity— of course! No two students are the same, and that just may be the best (if not one of the best) qualities of WMU.” He also shared that his goal for the WSA is “To promote more unity among different cultural, social and student groups on campus and to celebrate diversity and uniqueness!”
University Pride Chair:
Lauren Smith, an interpersonal communication major, serves as the university pride chair of the WSA. Her favorite thing about WMU is the variety of RSOs and opportunities to be involved. He hopes to make the WSA more involved with homecoming, writing in an email that: “During my time on WSA Cabinet, I hope to successfully implement a few WSA-specific Homecoming activities, such as the social media Spirit Week contest put into place this year, and potentially a Homecoming parade for next year!”
Nick Huffman is the IT coordinator for the WSA. He’s a dual computer science and Spanish major in his junior year. His favorite thing about WMU is the community and the people he’s met, saying “ I started out by trying to figure out how I fit in, and eventually I found some people that I believe will be lifelong friends.” His goal for his time on the WSA cabinet is to merge the current WSA website with wmich.edu.
Graphic Design Chair:
Graphic Design Chair Jaylynn Mittig is a graphic design student in her 3rd year at WMU. Her favorite thing about WMU is how inclusive it is, and her as a cabinet member is to help the rest of the WSA spread their message across campus.
A senior finance major, Jamal Aziz serves as the WSA’s chief justice. When asked what his favorite thing about WMU is, he responded saying, “ My favorite thing about WMU is how friendly everyone is and how diversified this campus is.” As the chief justice, he hopes to provide unbiased rulings in regards to WSA policies regarding elections and allocations.
Jenna Otten is the sustainability chair of the WSA. She is a senior student studying both environmental studies and travel and tourism. She loves the community at WMU, and her goal for her time as the sustainability chair is to become a bird safe campus.
Chief of Finance and Operations:
A junior studying finance, Austin Villeneuve serves as the chief of finance and operations. On the topic of what he loves about WMU, he writes that: “My favorite thing about WMU is how accepting everybody is. I love how you can go up to any staff or fellow bronco and they will be more than willing to have a conversation with you. Being a part of the WMU community is instant friendships with every bronco!” His goals for his time as a cabinet member is to make WSA documents easier for members to access and to keep other cabinet members on track with their budgets.
Speaker of the Senate:
Roger Brown is a fashion merchandising student in his fifth year at WMU. In an email, he said his favorite time of year at Western is football season, and he loves the diversity here on campus. He hopes to increase the sense of unity on campus and to help students bring their issues or ideas before the WSA and the administration.
Allocations Commission Chair:
Cameron Barnes, the allocations commision chair, is a sales and business marketing major. In an email he said his favorite thing about WMU is the wide array of student groups and opportunities to get involved. His goal for his time on the cabinet is to increase students’ awareness of the WSA.
Public Relations Chair:
Jasmine Jordan is a third year PR student working as the public relations chair of the WSA. For her, the best thing about WMU is its unique feel. “My favorite thing about Western is how it’s a bigger university with a small campus feel. I honestly don’t think that you can receive that kind of warmth at any other university,” she elaborated. She hopes to establish a monthly campus wide newsletter detailing the actions of the WSA.