Shifts in SA leadership won’t disrupt plans for student involvement, safety

Geneseo’s Student Association has undergone a change in leadership for the spring 2014 semester. Former SA President senior Forrest Regan left his position to former SA Vice President senior Katie Becker, as per SA protocol. Student Senator sophomore Paul Michael has been appointed as the new vice president.The position of SA president is normally one academic year in duration.

Regan, a sociology major who will graduate in spring 2015, said in an email interview that he left his position to participate in an internship in Washington, D.C. Becker, an international relations major, took on his position in accordance with the SA constitution’s procedure for the resignation of the president. She said that she was informed of Regan’s decision to leave his position in late December 2013.

Becker said that, although she had not anticipated the shift in leadership, she wants “business to continue as usual.” “I don’t want any big disruptions caused by this whole transition process,” she said.

“It was surprising and a little stressful, but I’m excited to see how it pans out,” Michael said. The SA constitution states that in the instance of a president’s resignation the former vice president appoints his or her successor. Becker selected Michael, who is a political science major, for the position.

He previously participated in SA as a student senator. Michael said he is excited about his new position. “Obviously it’s something for me to learn, but I trust that [Becker] is going to teach me a lot about the vice president position. It’s going to take some time but I can handle it,” he said.

Becker has priorities for her time as the new president of SA. “One of my hopes is to get students involved in the presidential search process,” she said. She is also interested in exploring how the Student Opinion of Faculty Instruction surveys can be made more effective. In their new positions, Becker and Michael will continue to work on publicizing the Responsible Community Action Policy.

This policy is part of an effort to encourage students to seek help for others who are in need, even in situations in which alerting authorities could lead to punishment.

“We want to incentivize students to take care of one another at the end of the day. We don’t want fears of retribution to stop someone from seeking help for someone else,” Becker said.

In addition to pursuing specific projects, Becker said she will bring her skills of organization and efficiency to her position as president.

“I want to promote discussions in the SA meetings on different topics that SA [representatives] and those who attend meetings can talk about,” she said. “I always want to be available for students if they have any questions or concerns.”

“The transition has gone very smoothly, so I’m very happy about that,” Becker said. “I don’t think this has really been a drawback. If anything, it’s made me super motivated to get things done, move forward and really go for it this semester.”

Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that Regan will graduate in spring 2016. He will graduate in spring 2015.