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Vols Speak – Parent/Family Blog

We are excited to feature blog posts throughout the month written by the Family Ambassadors! We hope that each post will provide you some insight into the student experience as seen by other students as well as opportunities to pass along to your student. Please email us at parents@utk.edu with any questions regarding the topics discussed in the blogs in order to get in contact with the Family Ambassador.

March 2016 Blog Posts

Do you have an underclassman student that wants to be informed and make changes on our campus? I encourage them to consider becoming a part of the Student Government Association! Whether they are a freshman or sophomore, SGA is always looking to recruit new members to serve in its various branches, including student services, which organizes events and programming, or student senate, which writes and approves legislation that goes to the desks of administrators.

After serving as an orientation leader for the past two years, I have definitely been amazed by the ability of underclassmen, and particularly First Year students, to make a change on our campus, but they do not always know how. While we hope that these students will become a part of SGA in the future, they already have many opportunities to have their voice heard. Each student is assigned certain senators for both their college and where they live, be it on or off campus, and they can locate this senator via the myUTK system. First Year Students also have a great opportunity to reach out to their group of specific representatives – the First Year Council.

2015-2016 First Year Council

While selection for FYC occurred at the beginning of the fall semester, this group is a great resource for any First Year Student, or any student hoping to better the First Year experience. This year I have had the opportunity to serve as the advisor for the First Year Council, and I can confidently say that they are a passionate group that would love to hear any student’s concerns. If you are the parent or family member of one of the students currently on First Year Council, thank you. You have raised competent, eloquent, and amazing young adults who continue to work hard to better the experience for all of the First Year Students that will come after them. One of my favorite things about this groups is that they focus on what changes they can make for the future of the University of Tennessee, and they have been selfless in this regard. Some of the issues which they are tackling revolve around advising at orientation, diversity education in residence halls, and enhanced programming for students to have their voices heard on our campus.

If your student has ever had a concern and wanted to make a difference, I highly encourage them to take a look at the Student Government Association! FYC is only one of the many channels to go through to have their voice heard, and there are still many ways to get involved within the organization. Encourage your student to visit our website sga.utk.edu, where we have a convenient suggestion box, and follow us on social media!

Elisabeth Logan, 2016 Family Ambassador

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