WSGA selects new budget director

ReAnne Utemark

The Washburn Student Government Association found its new budget director in freshman Keenan Hogan.

WSGA began its search for the executive staff position because current budget director, Kevin Nincehelser, will be traveling to the Philippines next semester to help with youth camps.

Whitney Philippi said there was a lot of interest in the position, but only two applicants. While the budget director has certain duties, including paying the bills and working with student organizations, the applicants did not need to be finance or accounting majors.

“They needed to be able to work well with people, such as student organizations who request funding, the rest of the staff and the senators,” said Philippi.

Hogan, a freshman biology major, was not a member of WSGA before he applied to be the budget director.

“It sounded like something I would be good at and have fun with,” said Hogan.

Hogan said he was interested in making sure things run efficiently.

Philippi said Hogan and the executive staff will work to acclimate the new member to the WSGA climate. Since being chosen, Hogan has been working through the WSGA constitution and was familiar with some of the executive staff and senators before he applied, which he thinks will help in the transition. Hogan has also been working with Nincehelser to make sure he can fully take over the budget next semester.

“I think he is extremely qualified, I think he will do a great job,” said Nincehelser.

Nincehelser said his strategy for the rest of the semester will be to stick to the budget with the help of the administration. Nincehelser said there was a huge learning curve that he was trying to help Hogan adjust to.

“My strategy is to just make sure that Keenan is prepared to take over my position,” said Nincehelser.

Nincehelser said he would still be available via e-mail if there are questions about the budget.

“The new budget director has been set up pretty well, but it is going to be a job to keep within that budget since it is smaller this year,” said Philippi.

Philippi was optimistic, however, because only approximately 50 percent of the student organization funding had been used.

“The whole point in having someone direct the budget is to make sure it is spent conservatively,” said Hogan. “And [the students’] student activity fee is spent to better the campus and not spent to better one person’s objective or one person’s goal. That is the frame of mind that I have.”

Nincehelser, a fellow outsider to WSGA, shared that sentiment as he left the budget director position. He said that his main goal in taking the budget director position was to get as much money for student activity fees back into the hands of students.

“I want to see as much money as possible going back to the students, because it is theirs,” said Nincehelser. “That is the purpose.”

Philippi also said the search for the other two positions, special events director and technology director, was going well and WSGA would soon have individuals in those positions.