The ballets are in and the newest class of senators have been chosen by their fellow classmates.
Elections for freshman class officers and senators at large were held Tuesday, Sept. 5.
Twelve students were elected, including freshman senators Ashlynn Philpot, Brooke Colvin, Mekela Litterell, Tyler Koonce and Emily Beach, and president and vice president Noah Graves and Jonas Palmer.
Senators at large elected include Hollie Dixon, Jacob Janzen, Hayden Ashley, Alyssa Alvarado and Ben Cale.
Vice president of internal affairs junior Savannah Payne believes the new senators will contribute lots of passion and hard work to SGA this year.
“I think the freshman bring a lot of excitement, because they’re new to SGA and college in general so they’re excited to get involved, making changes and learning about OBU,” Payne said. “The senators at large are bringing a lot of different things to the table, because some of them have previously run for office, so we know they are people who are interested and will work hard. There is lots of diversity in the new senators, which is important for making sure that we can reach all groups on campus.”
Newly elected freshman class president Noah Graves is honored and excited to have been chosen by his peers.
“I’ve always been drawn to leadership, and I had multiple people come up to me and tell me they thought I’d be good in that position,” Graves said. “It felt right, so I prayed about it for a while and had other people pray with me about it, and I got a yes. I chose to run, I prayed about a VP and who I should choose to run with me. I was excited to do it.”
Graves and the class Vice President, Jonas Palmer first got acquainted living on the same hall in Agee, where they decided to be running mates.
“We live on the same hall, and we were both in Frosted Philosophers so we got to know each other,” Graves said. “I knew I wanted someone who was going to be a leader and that was extroverted. [Palmer] is in love with Christ, and when I asked him if he would consider running he said to give him a few days to pray about it, so I knew he would be the right candidate because of his attitude and leadership.”
Graves believes no matter what the outcome of the election was, the freshman class would always be in good hands due to the great candidates.
“I was just honored to be selected to fill the position,” Graves said. “I’m really excited to meet my fellow freshman class, to do life together for the next four years, and to lead and serve Christ by serving the freshman class.”
Graves is “ecstatic” about the talent and leadership among SGA members this year.
“Everyone there is very qualified and will do an awesome job of serving,” Graves said. “Everyone there is in love with student government, so we’re so excited to put on different events, different fundraisers in order to have an awesome school year. It’s going to be an awesome year, and SGA is putting in 100 percent to make this year better than the last.”
According to Payne, students can expect to see many events, old favorites and exciting new things, this year on Bison Hill.
“We’re doing Brushes and Brews again, which has always been a popular event, and we have some new events we’re trying to plan this semester,” Payne said. “We’re partnering with the Black Student Association to start an event called Let’s Talk, or a round table discussion to talk about current events dealing with racial relations.”
The biggest goals this year for SGA are inspired by unity and Dr. Whitlock’s convocation message.
“Going along with Dr Whitlock’s convocation message about racial reconciliation, we’ll be working with BSA,” Payne said. “[External vice president] Zach Fisher has been working hard to get connected with all of the executive officers from all the different clubs across campus to try to get all of the different organizations to support each other. Having more community between clubs, we’re trying to make bridges between all the organizations on campus to support each other.”
Payne reminds students that SGA has the ability to help provide funding and other services to organizations on campus, some of their many functions.
“Organizations can come to us for funds, or to be chartered so they can ask for funds,” Payne said. “For us to be able to give them money, groups have to be a chartered organization through the university and that is something that we do. You can get in contact with one of the executive officers if you want to write a bill, and we can assign it to a senator to write.”