This archived article was written by: Shadayah Jones
After winning the 2014 student body elections, Ben Bjarnson, USU Eastern’s new student body president, already has many ideas formulating for the upcoming school year. Right after discovering that he won the elections, his first thought was surprise. When it came to the competition between the two candidates Bjarnson says, “Miranda Cox was a really powerful candidate.”
With the next school year approaching quickly, Bjarnson is formulating many ideas of what he would like to see happen at USU Eastern. One of these ideas is bundling tuition with books so students are paying one price. This will also allow students to have their books on the first day of classes. “The chances of this happening next year is not likely, but will hopefully be in place for future generations.”
He would like to see advertising efforts increase on campus. “There are a lot of activities on campus that students don’t find out about. By strategically placing little billboards, we could effectively reach a larger population and include the community as well. This will build our community partners and help students learn more about the community which will help them find jobs and alternative places to live.”
Another project Bjarnson is hoping to accomplish is the increase of clubs on campus and help organizers feel needed and wanted. By doing this, it will help students meet people who share the same interests and create more activities that allow students to become involved.
When it comes to changes at USU Eastern, Bjarnson is cautious, but open minded. “Change is always scary and I am defiantly concerned about when we need to change, but something I would like to see change or increase is the relationship between the faculty and staff with the students. I want students to be able to feel comfortable approaching them when they have a question or concern. I want an immediate support system within the faculty and staff so students know who they need to go to for help.”
Each year the student body president has a major project they are in charge of. Bjarnson has some ideas about what he wants to do and is in the beginning stages of the planning process. One of his ideas is to team with a local company called “Little Billboards.” The owner, Kevin Johnson and his partner, provide television advertising programs. Bjarnson said, “I would like to place these throughout campus and in buildings where students rarely hear about activities. By putting advertising there, it would let students know what is going on and they would feel more included with student life.”
With this next school year approaching, Bjarnson has many ideas to help increase community and unity at USU Eastern. Although he has many ideas, he wants the student’s opinions. He explains, “I need a think tank. So if anyone has any ideas of how we can better accomplish something or anything new that they want, please run it by me, Wyntre Pierce or Arsene Mugisha, so we can all work together. Let’s make this school an environment that is absolutely fantastic and where everyone has a say.”