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Student Council confirms new leadership under executive board

Student Council also tabled a resolution amending bylaws to reflect the updated name of the School of Education and Human Development.

The student leaders were confirmed through a vote in a process similar to the executive board members at the previous meeting.
The student leaders were confirmed through a vote in a process similar to the executive board members at the previous meeting.

After a brief delay in announcing its leadership positions, Student Council's executive board confirmed new leaders in each of its branches for their 2024-25 term. These new leaders will work under the recently confirmed executive board to manage Student Council’s various responsibilities, ranging from organization recognition to marketing. 

The student leaders were confirmed through a popular vote among the representative body, similar to how the executive board members were confirmed at the previous meeting. The 36 new student leadership roles were divided into four distinct categories: the Administrative, Cabinet, Organizations and Support and Access Services branches. Reflecting this division, a total of four bills were written to confirm all of the members. 

Applications for leadership positions in each branch opened March 11 and closed March 15. All Student Council representatives were eligible to run for leadership positions.

SB24-17 specifically listed the members of the Administrative branch, which manages operations and community relations, headed by Brookelyn Mitchell, vice president for administration and third-year College student. The new leadership positions included directors for the Marketing, History, Data Science, Membership and Finance committees. Mitchell, who sponsored the bill, spoke to each selected leader’s skills, experiences and goals before they were unanimously confirmed. 

“I know we have a lot of [items today], so I'm not going to talk to you forever about the amazing directors I have picked for admin,” Mitchell said. “But when I tell you this is the best group of admin that I've seen in a long time, I firmly believe that.” 

Ryan Bowers, vice president for organizations and third-year Commerce student, similarly introduced the new leaders for the Organizations branch, which manages support for Contracted Independent Organizations on Grounds. SB24-19 unanimously passed, confirming new student directors for the Appropriations, CIO Consultants and Organizations Recognition committees. 

“[The new directors have] great ideas,” Bowers said. “They’re all super talented, and all of these directors are super in tune with the org branch … [they] understand the needs of clubs [as they are] coming from such a wide range of them.”

Valentina Mendoza Gonzalez, president and third-year Batten student, presented the qualifications and objectives of the SAS and Cabinet branch’s new student leaders. The positions enumerated in bill SB24-18 included the branch’s new directors for the Sustainability, Student Life, Safety and Wellness, Legislative Affairs, Academic Affairs, Arts, Community Engagement, Financial Accessibility and International Student Affairs committees. In bill SB24-20, Mendoza Gonzalez also introduced SAS student directors for the Accommodations Access Fund, Student Legal Services, Airbus, Next Steps Fund and Textbook Access Office on behalf of Clay Dickerson, chief of the SAS branch. Both bills passed unanimously, confirming the new student leaders. 

Andreas Masiakos, representative body chair and third-year College student, said Student Council still has vacancies and is looking for more students to serve as representatives. He added that he has contacted the presidents of each of the University’s schools’ student councils asking them to nominate representatives. Masiakos said he hopes that Student Council will have a fully-filled representative body within the next few weeks. 

Student Council also entertained SB24-21 during the legislative session, which proposed amending Student Council’s bylaws to reflect the name change of the Curry School of Education and Human Development to the School of Education and Human Development. Benvin Lozada, rules and ethics chair and graduate Arts & Sciences student, sponsored the bill. The Board of Visitors voted to rename the school in 2020 after many members of the University community pushed to leave behind the previous namesake, Jabez Curry, because of his association with pro-segregation ideologies. 

“I felt it was appropriate to introduce legislation in order to make sure that [the building name is] updated in the bylaws so that we can not only remain consistent with the University of Virginia, but also acknowledge the advocacy of former students, faculty and staff in getting that name changed,” Lozada said. 

According to Lozada, standard Student Council procedure mandates that any bill amending bylaws must be tabled for two meetings before being voted upon. After being tabled at one more meeting, the bill will be voted on by Student Council. 

Student Council will meet again Tuesday. 


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