Garrett Love and Caley Onek are enthusiastic about their run for President and Vice President of WSGA, and they are ready with ideas about retention, school spirit and ways to help students become invested in Washburn’s campus.
Communication to help involvement
“The concern for us was student life and student involvement at Washburn University and we feel a big way of addressing that is communication,” said Garrett Love, presidential candidate. “Students need to become involved, they need to become a part of something.”
The team said that students who get involved are more likely to stay at Washburn for four years. Love said that both he and Caley Onek were “thankful” for their Washburn experiences and wanted to help facilitate that for other students.
Onek added that retention was a big issue.
“We want students to be so excited about being at Washburn, and college life and campus life, that they want to stay here and graduate from Washburn,” said Onek.
In order to meet these ends, the Love/Onek team wants to implement the Bod Alert text messaging alert system that would inform students about events on campus, as well as announcements like snow days. The Love/Onek team thought students would find the program useful and that many students would use it. They want to heavily promote it to incoming freshmen so that these freshmen can sign up for it and more easily get involved in the first year.
Students would be able to text a specific word to a number and they will be subscribed to the service and they always have the option of unsubscribing.
“We want to spread awareness so students have access to be more involved,” said Onek.
Love said students he spoke to have indicated that they did not attend events because they did not know about them beforehand.
Greek Experience as a WTE
Onek said her ticket wants to make the WTE more user-friendly.
“A lot of students are confused, they don’t know how to get their WTE,” said Onek.
Onek said she recently completed a WTE and said that she was in the middle of the process before she found out how to complete her WTE. Onek said that the Greek experience included many of the same aspects as the four pillars of the WTE.
“We just want to let them know that what they’re doing right now could probably be a WTE for them,” said Onek.
Love said awareness is key, and many students are intimidated by the process or uninformed. However, the Greek experience is not intended to become a fifth pillar of the WTE.
“We want to be educators of the WTE,” said Love. “We think that is a huge issue at Washburn University. It’s a great program and helping students realize that and making it more user-friendly is something that we want to do. It shouldn’t be intimidating.”
Love said the campus safety plan that he and Onek advocate is similar to a neighborhood watch program that would inform students about safety on campus. For example, the availability of the campus police force 24 hours per day or the emergency call centers. Onek said that they had looked into other universities’ campus watch programs and said these programs were successful.
In light of WSGA’s funding for student organizations running out, Love and Onek want to look at the structure of funding student organizations. Love said he realized the budget was not likely to increase in the next year, so he Onek are very interested in focusing on the structure of how student orgs is organized. Onek said WSGA raised the amount of funding that student orgs could get.
“At the time, I think senators thought that that was just a small amount, but that it would benefit the organizations more,” said Onek. “That small amount of money adds up.”
Love and Onek said they did not want to take money away from student organizations, but did want to conduct research that would allow more student organizations to be funded.
Love and Onek said they have been heavily involved across campus because of their fond feelings for Washburn. They said their experiences have led them to want to serve and help other students have a positive experience.
Know the facts:Garrett LoveHometown: Montezuma, Kan.Major: Management/Econ./Finance
Caley OnekHometown: El Dorado, Kan.Major: Business Marketing/Sports Management
The IssuesInclude Greek Experience as part of WTEEstablish textbook rental program through WU BookstoreIncrease school spirit on campus