Twenty-three students submitted applications last week to become the student representative on the University’s Board of Visitors for the 2016-17 school year.
The applicant pool is composed of 16 College students, three Law students, two Batten students, one Architecture student and one Commerce student.
A student committee will review the applications and begin conducting interviews on Feb. 10.
After the first round of interviews, several finalists will then be chosen for interviews with the Board of Visitors Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will vote to elect the next student representative once this process is complete.
Current student representative Daniel Judge, a fourth-year College student, said the role of the student representative is two-fold — both conveying to board members student perspectives and communicating to students what the board is currently discussing.
“We have a very large [and] diverse student body, and that reaches very different parts of the community,” Judge said. “It’s a lot of people to look at, communicate with and represent. [The student representative] has to be somebody who has the energy and will to go to all these corners.”
The Board of Visitors serves as the governing body for not only the main campus in Charlottesville, but also the University's Medical Center and College at Wise.
Frank M. Connor III, vice rector of the board, also said the student representative is ideally one who is active and vocal in many student circles.
“You want someone who is willing to interact with the students,” Connor said. “Someone who has a natural talent to reach out to people and who can articulate the ideas they have and have received.”
The student member is a valuable tool for the board to gauge students’ sentiments regarding a variety of issues and is given a chance to speak at each general board meeting, Connor said.
“I think people need to understand this is not a perfunctory position,” Connor said. “Since I’ve been on the board we’ve had fabulous student representatives and they are awarded equal status and equal respect for their insights.”
Focuses of discussion in the past year have included the University’s endowment and sustainable energy on Grounds, among others, Judge said.
The final vote by the Board of Visitors to elect the new student representative is set to take place Feb. 17.