OP-ED: Delivering a Positive Impact

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022021004156

(COURTESY OF USG)
(COURTESY OF USG)

By ALEC PADRON
Contributing Writer

The summer before my freshman year, I was overcome with anxiety about starting college. I worried about fitting in at Fordham and whether or not I would enjoy my environment on campus. After voicing my concerns to my parents, I was given one piece of advice that would stay with me: “Remember to stay relevant.” To me, staying relevant means trying my best to have a positive impact that will outlast my time at Fordham. When I finally began freshman year, I joined United Student Government (USG), the club that I felt would give me the best opportunity to “stay relevant.”

During my first year on USG I served as the Gabelli Senator for the class of 2018. I sat on the facilities committee where I worked on several initiatives, including the addition of single stall gender-neutral bathrooms on campus. USG gave me the opportunity as a freshman to integrate myself with the community and learn how to address students’ concerns and suggestions. The following year, I felt that I could take on more responsibilities within USG and joined the Executive Board as the Treasurer. I acted as the chairperson of the Student Activity Budget Committee and helped distribute funding to clubs. After a semester abroad, I returned to USG as a Junior Senator. Serving the Fordham student body as a member of USG helped me realize that I am passionate about creating and upholding an environment that is open and responsive to all members of the community. I am grateful to have the opportunity to run for USG President, and if elected, will make building the community at Fordham my top priority.

My platform aims to have students feel integrated as contributing members of their community, rather than feeling like they have no input in the important decisions USG makes. In the past, it has been very difficult for non-USG members to learn information about USG’s accomplishments or how they can contribute to important discussions. To improve this, I plan to introduce an online USG form to make expressing concerns easy and accessible for all students, not just those in a club or committee. Having an online form in place will aid in the facilitation of an open and receptive environment for all students at Fordham. I also would like to publish a USG newsletter, which would publicize information on USG’s general meetings and town halls.

Of course, in addition to hearing concerns I also plan to act on them. Some of my top priorities as president would be addressing the extension of library hours, meeting with Student Involvement to make the club approval process faster and more transparent and to simplify guest speaker forms.

Simply put, I would like to be president so I can help make Fordham a better place for all. Fordham is a very special place to me, and I want everyone to experience the same feelings of being welcomed and integrated that I had my freshman year through my involvement with USG. As my campaign for President progresses, I would like everyone to know that it is my goal to continue bringing positive change to Fordham and strengthening the community. I love Fordham, but I know it’s not perfect – I will work tirelessly to implement your suggestions and make Fordham a place with an efficient governing body, but more importantly, a strong and caring community