Megan Hazuga-

The 2016-2017 school year is coming to a close, and even though seniors are leaving and new freshman will be arriving in the fall, the organizations we know and love on campus must remain. On Thursday, April 13, students will have the opportunity to vote for which students they want to represent them for the 48th congress of the Stout Student Association (SSA).

The SSA is made up of 37 students, five directors, 26 senators, a president, a vice president and their advisor. All the members of SSA have one common goal: protecting the student voice.  “Decisions are made behind [students’] backs every day, and we have the opportunity to change that and speak for every single student,” said current Director of Organizational Affairs, Alex Vernon.

Senators and directors serve different roles on the SSA, and are both equally important to the well-being of student life. Senators use their voice to speak and vote on standing committees. They use their position in SSA to speak for all students, including creating motions for issues on campus to be addressed. For example, Senator-at-large Coltan Schoenike was behind the motion to change Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day. Senators are involved in campus operational decisions that happen every day, such as adding courses to the curriculum.

Directors serve on the executive board of SSA, and have more responsibilities while working in the SSA office. They also are proactive in creating projects and spearheading campaigns. The directors make decisions regarding the well-being of SSA as an organization, as well as looking out for the well-being of the entire student body.

Stephanie Zengler, the Director of Financial Affairs, stated, “When I was a senator I really enjoyed involving myself in special projects… when I became a director I couldn’t do as many projects, so that was not as fun, but it’s still really fun to be a director and ask people to help you with projects and be on the other end of that.”

Voting for these students to represent campus will take place on Thursday, April 13. The SSA president will send an all-student email at 8 a.m. with a link for an online ballot, which will stay open until 8 p.m. on Friday, April 14.