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SGA: Bridging the Divide

Correction: A previous version of this story referred to Carter St. Clair as Executive Vice President. His actual title is Executive President. Last Updated Tuesday Sept. 26, 2023, at 9:32 A.M.

The Student Government Association, commonly known as SGA, kicked off their 2023-24 meetings this last week. As student members joined together to go over a general overview of the school year, SGA announced this year’s board members.

These students holding office are: Carter St. Clair, Executive President; Vada Arndt, Executive Vice President; Querida De Frias, President of Finance; Meagan Warzynski, Vice President of Publicity; Michelle Valencia, Vice President of Student Endeavors; Isabel Jaquez, Vice President of Diversity; Emily Eagan, Vice President of Sustainability.

The SGA holds meetings bi-weekly to discuss different events and legislations they have added to their agenda throughout the year. As the year progresses, students in SGA plan to succeed the year with two big goals in mind, the biggest being active student body involvement.

To ensure they achieve this goal, SGA has discussed holding town hall meetings. The goal of these meetings is to involve students who are not necessarily members of SGA, but feel as though they want to voice a concern or compliment. The town hall meetings will also be a place where additional faculty and advisors can get involved in SGA in ways that were not possible in previous years.

Another goal SGA is aiming to accomplish this year is to create closer and more involved relationships with all the active clubs at the university. This will allow SGA to better understand the needs of all the clubs here at the university, and better meet the needs of all of the clubs. As the year progresses, clubs will be assigned to different advisor-like students that are members of SGA, and will allow for better concentrated attention to clubs versus one student being the sole liaison. Executive President Carter St. Clair has been a key to vocalizing the capabilities of SGA.

St. Clair is a senior student majoring in Biochemistry. He joined SGA his sophomore year just as COVID-19 had caused a drop in student interest in SGA. Because of this, there has been an underlying mission as St. Clair progressed through his time spent with SGA, vocalizing what the purpose of SGA is and creating an environment where more students want to get involved.

“I know this was a force that could do a lot of things,” St. Clair said. “Overseeing clubs, talking to administrators, getting the student voices out there. I knew that it had the force to do that but it just was not happening.”

As St. Clair began his journey in SGA, he began by holding a Senator position which allowed him to write legislation that got passed.

“I was told that there were feminine hygiene product dispensers in most of the women’s bathrooms, however, you had to pay a quarter to use the dispenser,” St. Clair said. “My legislation was that feminine hygiene products would not only be free but the bathrooms would be stocked more often, and that was passed.”

St. Clair enjoys his position as Executive Vice President because it relates directly to who he is as a person outside of the title he has achieved.

“A lot of this position is the ability to work with and for teams,” St. Clair said. “It’s a lot of conflict management and mediation between SGA and the clubs we oversee, for me I tend to be the mediator within my friend group so that comes naturally.”

St. Clair looks forward to displaying these skills throughout the school year. For more information on SGA meeting times, check out their Instagram account, @sga_usf.

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