Former WSU Senate President Named Student Regent on Utah Board of RegentsOGDEN, Utah – Utah Gov. Gary Herbert has appointed Weber State University student Brady Harris as the student regent on the Utah State Board of Regents for the 2014-15 academic year. Harris served as a WSU student senator for two years and as Executive Vice President and Senate President of the WSU Student Association for another two years.
|Brady Harris, Utah State Board of Regents student regent, 2014-2015|
"Brady Harris' extensive background in student government, as well as his advocacy for various student-led initiatives, makes him a valuable asset to the Board of Regents," Herbert said. "His perspectives and experiences from Weber State University will benefit students at institutions around the state. He will be an effective voice for the opinions and concerns of his peers in our higher education system."
The Utah State Board of Regents is the governing body for the Utah System of Higher Education. The board consists of 19 regents. The governor appoints 15 members to six-year terms. The student regent is a one-year appointment. The three others are non-voting members from the Utah System of Higher Education and Utah College of Applied Technology.
The board’s major responsibilities include selecting and evaluating institutional presidents, setting policy, approving programs, missions and degrees, and submitting a unified higher education budget request to the governor and state Legislature.
“The Board of Regents benefits greatly from the appointment of a student regent, who provides a keen voice and unique perspective to the issues that come before the board,” said Utah Commissioner of Higher Education David Buhler. “On behalf of the Utah System of Higher Education and the entire Board of Regents, I congratulate Brady and look forward to working with him.”
At Weber State, Harris was instrumental in initiating the campus smoking policy and getting student approval and funding for an $8.5 million renovation of the Wildcat Center for Health Education and Wellness.
“The project showed that university administration is responsive to the student voice when it’s given through the officially established channel of student representation via the appropriate governing bodies,” Harris said. “That’s a perspective I can bring to this new opportunity.”
Harris learned of the student regent position during his first year in college and thought it would be a position he would like to fill. He applied in April, and his term began July 1.
|Brady Harris with student government representatives, Wildcat Center for Health Education and Wellness ribbon cutting, 2013|
“To have the opportunity to serve students, not just at Weber State but statewide, was appealing to me,” Harris said. “It has been the realization of a dream. I have been preparing to serve at that level for five years now.”
Harris is the first WSU student in more than a decade to be appointed as student regent. His main objective is to visit various campuses and get to know the issues each university faces. He will then work with student government leaders across the state to address those challenges.
Harris said he will stress the importance of students getting involved in the decision-making process because without the students’ voice, the board would have a harder time improving the college experience.
“I am a huge advocate for the importance of having a student representation in the policymaking process. It is difficult to know exactly how issues affect students. If you are not an active student, it can be hard to see things from that perspective when making administrative decisions,” Harris said. “Working together is very powerful. Everybody I ever worked with was always willing to improve things for the betterment of students.”
For more information on the Utah System of Higher Education, visit higheredutah.org. For more information on WSU’s student senate, visit weber.edu/WSUSA.
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