New Student Advocacy Chair aims to amplify student voices

Shannon McMullen/Contributing Writer


The Student Government Council at Biscayne Bay has selected their new Student Advocacy Chair to increase communication between students and the university.

Ashley Rosales-Tejeda, a freshman undecided major, was nominated and voted in by the senate a few months ago. When she first started FIU, she knew she wanted to get more involved on campus.

“What attracted me [to the position] was that I had an opportunity to be involved here at FIU BBC and I have the opportunity to better the communication between students and FIU and get their voices heard,” Rosales-Tejeda said.

Rosales-Tejeda’s goal as chair this year is to increase the impact of students voices on campus, according to her.

“I know I just recently got appointed to the chair of student advocacy, but one goal I do know for sure is that, whatever I do, whether it be big or small, I want it to impact the way students can get their voices heard here at BBC,” she said.

Because BBC is a small campus, students’ voices have a better opportunity to be heard, she said, but students don’t get as involved on campus as they could be.

BBC offers opportunities, resources and events that a lot of students are missing out on, according to Rosales-Tejeda. Her committee, she said, continues to work hard to ensure there is more student involvement and form a connection as a community.

One of the most common strategies she uses to help students become more involved is free food. Other strategies, she said, are events where students can come take a break from class and enjoy free giveaways.

Some of the events she and her committee have planned for the semester are part of BBC’s weeklong “Week of Welcome,” which ended on Friday, Jan. 12. The events during that week involved free food, giveaways and activities to welcomes students back the right way.

One of the achievements Rosales-Tejeda is proud of was made by two members of her committee.

“[They] were very concerned with mental health for the students and thought of the idea of putting the suicide [hotline] phone number on the back of every ID,” she said.

Although the committee wasn’t able to make that possible due to difficulties, the committee, she said, was able to put the hotline number on every FIU map for the next year.

As chair of Student Advocacy, her responsibilities include working in the SGC-BBC office, meeting with the SGC-BBC advocacy committee and trying to figure out ways to get the students more involved.

Even though the position comes with a lot of responsibilities, Rosales-Tejeda said she doesn’t have trouble balancing her job and her studies. She owes this to her time management skills, though she did say that at times it does get a little hectic.

Rosales said she fits the position because she is a determined student in everything she does and she has a passion for being involved and making a difference with students.

“A great leader won’t be a great leader if they are not passionate in what they are doing. They will not want to make a genuine impact for the students,” she said.

Additionally, as chair, she was able to participate in a student leadership convention in Denver that showed strategies on how to become a better leader in student government. She also participated in the merger discussions between SGC-MMC and SGC-BBC, attending meetings and writing down the concerns and questions of BBC students.

Even though she’s only been in the position for a few months, she said she’s already learned a lot.

“I’ve gained more passion and appreciation for what I am doing. I’ve also gained new strategies on how to become a better leader not only at the SGA office, but in everything I do, whether it be at school, home, or in the community,” she said.


Featured Image courtesy of Ashley Rosales-Tejeda

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