Mouzourakis and Breed will have plenty to tackle as SGA president and vice president
The editorial board would like to congratulate Brittany Mouzourakis and Dave Breed for being elected the next Student Government Association president and vice president.
The two should take a moment to celebrate — but keep that moment brief.
Mouzourakis and Breed definitely have their work cut out for them as issues such as budget cuts, discussions on tuition this summer and next fall’s tailgating season loom ahead.
Our hope is they will take further the positive momentum in leadership that SGA president Jason Nichol brought to the table throughout the last academic year.
SGA in the past has not had the significant influence on campus it boasts by name.
Nichol helped to rectify that a bit by actively advocating for students’ interests.
He was instrumental in adding $26,100 to the Campus Programming Fund last fall.
He also worked with the administration to loosen tailgating rules implemented last fall during football season, including lifting the ban on external sound systems in time for CMU’s Homecoming game.
The fact that Mouzourakis worked alongside Nichol and saw first-hand what it took to be an effective SGA president will be her biggest strength.
The pro bono legal center she and Breed proposed during their campaign is an intriguing proposition.
It could be one of the most beneficial places for students on campus, considering a good amount of students are unaware what to do when they receive an MIP and have other run-ins with the law.
Hopefully, the two will hit the ground running with this proposal.
Mouzourakis and Breed’s biggest challenge as president and vice president, however, will be between the administration and the students.
If this past academic year has proven anything, administration at this university has exercised a measly effort at transparency, between appointing University President George Ross without an open forum, choosing a medical college dean in private and handling Jacqueline Garrett’s resignation from the Board of Trustees.
It is Mouzourakis and Breed who will serve as the students’ voice.
To be effective leaders, they need to recognize the importance of open communication and not ignore issues handled inefficiently.
Communication will be a huge part of keeping things transparent between the administration and students.
The SGA president should be in consistent contact with the administration, even on weeks when things seem mundane.
When something does happen, the two will need a working relationship with those in charge at the university to have an influence.
They also will have to get students more involved with policies and issues happening on campus.
The communication has to be a two-way street and students have been known to not be as involved as they should be.
Given Mouzourakis’ past experiences with SGA and the platform she built with Breed, SGA should have no problem continuing the forward motion Nichol developed.
Kudos to Nichol for his hard work, and we are hopeful Mouzourakis will develop a vision of her own.