Want to get involved at Weber State? Here's how.
Have you ever heard that students who get involved with their university are more likely to enjoy their college experience and more likely to graduate? Have you ever been told the importance of getting involved in your university? I have heard these sentiments time and time again throughout my college experience. After having been involved with the University, I believe these sentiments to be true. However, as a student, getting involved can be an overwhelming prospect. At Weber State, there are so many ways to get involved that it can be tough to know where to start.
When I was a senior in high school planning to come to Weber State, I started to consider this question of where to get involved. In this process, I reached out to my Great Aunt Mary who I knew had some connections to Weber State. She sent me an invitation to join the Emerging Leaders program. This was my gateway into student leadership at Weber State. In my time as a student leader, I learned so much about myself and how to be a successful leader. I also had the opportunity to make some awesome friends and have so much fun at events and parties.
Today I would like to be for you what my Great Aunt Mary was for me. I would like to teach you about the student involvement and leadership opportunities at Weber State and give you a jumping-off point for really getting involved in your college experience.
Where to Begin?
There are many many ways to get involved at Weber State University. If you are interested in student government and leadership opportunities, I would recommend that you get involved with WSUSA through SIL. Now that is a lot of acronyms, so let me explain what each of them means.
What is SIL?
SIL stands for Student Involvement and Leadership. SIL is a department of Weber State that covers many types of involvement from student government to clubs and organizations to diversity and inclusive programs.
What is WSUSA?
WSUSA stands for Weber State University Student Association. WSUSA is a group of students who work together to represent the student body as a whole. WSUSA is divided into eight branches: President's Cabinet, Student Senate, Activities, Diversity and Unity, Leadership, Clubs and Organizations, Community Engagement, and Davis Campus. Each branch fulfills different duties and puts on different events. With this variety, there is a niche for everyone who wants to get involved. All of these different branches are run by a Vice President (VP) as well as a staff advisor. Each branch has its own team of appointed students who help the branches to run smoothly.
Why get involved in WSUSA?
Now that you have a bit of a better understanding of SIL and WSUSA, you may be wondering what the benefits are for getting involved. For me, being involved in WSUSA gave me a place to call home. When I came to Weber State, I left everything behind. I left all of my friends and family to find a new life in the big city of Ogden. When I arrived, I was alone and intimidated by all of the possibilities. WSUSA gave me a group of people who I could trust to help me through the journey that is college.
In my position, not only did I make some awesome friends. I also learned about myself and how to be a good leader. After completing the Emerging Leaders program, I went on to be the Student Life and Interest Clubs Chair for the Clubs and Organizations team, and then I was the Davis Campus Senator on the Student Senate. In these positions, I learned how to run events and how to be a voice for the student body.
Also, some of my favorite memories of college have come from being involved in WSUSA. Every year I was able to participate in a statewide student government conference where I had the opportunity to meet other student leaders from all over the state and learn more about how their schools run. My sophomore year I had the opportunity to get a practically free trip to New Orleans with other WSUSA leaders to go to a conference where we ate fun food and learned how schools across the country are run.
Being involved not only gave me access to these cool trips, but also gave me more access to WSU as a whole. When I was involved, I knew when events were happening on campus and who was running the event. Whenever I went to an event on campus I always had a familiar face to say hello to.
I highly recommend getting involved in WSUSA. It may seem intimidating to apply at first. However, in my experience, there are always open positions that need to be filled by any interested students, and you are likely to get in. You also possibly have the opportunity to receive a waiver to cover some of your school costs. The money that I received helped me to be able to pay for school without having to get an additional job for income.
How to Get Involved
In WSUSA there are two types of positions: elected positions and appointed positions. Each type has a different application and selection process. Any full-time Weber State student can apply for any of the positions that seem interesting to them.
The elected positions are the Student Body President, the Vice Presidents of each of seven branches, and the Student Senators. Each spring, students have the opportunity to run for each of these various positions. Any full-time student can run for any VP position as long as they follow the protocol outlined in the election packet which is distributed through SIL each year. Students then have the opportunity to vote.
Even if you are not elected into the position, running for office is a great opportunity to practice writing a platform and selling yourself. This also gives you an opportunity to present your ideas of how to make Weber State University a better place.
Appointed positions are filled through an application and interview process. Students wishing to be involved in WSUSA but not wanting to run for Student Body President, Vice President, or a Senator position can apply for appointed positions through the WSUSA website. There are many different positions to be filled, and there is almost always room for more students. When filling out the application, applicants will have the opportunity to pick out the top three positions that they would be interested in holding. The applications will then be reviewed by the Vice President and the advisor, and chosen applicants will have the opportunity to interview for the position. Once the applicant is invited to join the team, they will attend weekly meetings to help the branch fulfill its duties. Duties range from sending out informational emails to planning school-wide events to attending training on how to become a better leader and more.
Appointed positions are an easy way to get into WSUSA without having to run for office. Once you get your foot in the door with an appointed position, it is easier to run for office in the future.
There is so much more information about WSUSA and SIL that I could not fit into this short blog post. If you are interested in the topic and would like to learn more, I suggest visiting Student Involvement. This site has pages and pages of information on all of the different branches of WSUSA and how you can get involved.
I hope this post has inspired you to get involved and really get the most out of your college experience. No doubt about it, college can be hard. However, being involved can help you find a group of people who will support you through this journey. Through being involved you can not only make new friends but learn more about who you are and how to be a strong leader.
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