North Texas Daily

Letter: The case for student government representatives

Letter: The case for student government representatives

Letter: The case for student government representatives
February 12
21:32 2017

Tiffany E. Miller | Contributing Writer

Tiffany E. Miller is a senator for the College of Arts and Sciences at UNT. She is also an integrative studies major. Tiffany E. Miller

Please allow me to make the following assertion: being a student government representative is difficult.

We are subject to constant scrutiny and criticism. Worst of all, we frequently experience burnout. One person can only stand receiving disappointing e-mails from faculty, sit in office hours without a single student dropping by, watch initiatives fall short in attendance, fight without fruition and reach out without anyone reaching back for so long before succumbing to feelings of uselessness.

I became a member of the former House of Representatives in February 2015, and I have either seen or been involved with legislation regarding the following: the creation of an academic success center, renovations to the Language Building, plans for the creation of gender neutral housing, the creation of the Graduate Student Council, e-ride shuttle hour extensions, carbon neutrality, transportation, student legal services expansion and several other pieces.

I could list the various initiatives that have come to pass as well — stalker awareness and education, campus safety, campus accessibility, student outreach and diversity — but that would take too long to write out and would defeat the point I am trying to make, which is that we care.

As a student representative, nothing breaks my heart more than some of my constituents believing I do not work on their behalf or that I do not care about their needs or wishes for the campus. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

I will gladly put months into planning an event if it means a single student will get something out of attending it. I will put hours into researching and writing a piece of legislation if it results in students’ lives improving during their stays at the university. I will personally sit in meetings, knock on professors’ doors and badger administration if it will make them listen to a single student’s concern.

And I will do all of this without expecting anything in return, because I did not become a student representative for an accolade, “thank you” or any other benefit. I became one simply out of care for the students I have had the joy of knowing, the privilege of calling my friends and the honor of considering my family.

I cannot nor will I attempt to speak on behalf of the Student Government Association, but I will say this about myself and the people I work with: we want to hear from students, we want to know about and address your concerns, we want to help you enact change for the better on campus, we push for you even when you do not feel like we do and we strive to be the leaders you need and deserve.

As for myself, being a student representative is difficult, but I will always be there for those who need me and we will never stop believing in the students of the University of North Texas. You are worth that much and more.  

Yours,

Tiffany E. Miller

Featured Image: Graphic courtesy of UNT SGA.

About Author

Preston Mitchell

Preston Mitchell

Preston served as the Opinion Editor of the North Texas Daily from July 2016 to July 2017, and is a UNT graduate of integrative studies.

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