Everyone must do their part for SG administration to be a success

Column by Tyler Montell

It’s the beginning of a new era for the University of Kentucky. Our athletic teams are setting the standard for excellence, with our football team leading the way, looking to go 3-0 next Saturday. Our class of new students is one of the most impressive in school history, making our top-20 goal more attainable now than it has ever been.

It’s a new era for us in Student Government, too. While we made outstanding progress last year, we are looking to take this organization to the next level this year. You may have heard references in the Kernel about our Campus365 plan last week. After a summer of hard work we are proud to release our plan to you today. Now, we know what you are thinking, “Great, but what is this Campus365 thing?”

We’re glad you asked. The Campus365 plan is a comprehensive report on the initiatives, goals and programs of the Montell-Mills administration for the 2008-09 academic year. Please refer to our Web site (www.uksga.org) to download your own copy. The plan is designed to provide students, faculty, administrators and staff with an insight on the state of the university we want to leave for the next Student Government administration.

We are using this format as a means to map our vision and track our progress, and it is our hope that you will use this plan to evaluate our performance as the president and vice president of this student body. This is not merely a progress report for the university or an assessment for SG leaders. It is a forecast of where we believe this university can be a year from our inauguration date, and how we can get there.

This plan is a living document. While the destinations will not change, we will add to the report so that future administrations will know what has worked for us, and also what we can improve on. We want this to be the start of a Student Government tradition, that every new administration will set forth a plan of action for the upcoming year. It is our hope that many years from now, our legacy of public accountability and initiating debate on this campus will build on itself year after year.

This report by itself is barely worth the paper it is printed on. A plan without action is as effective as an automobile without wheels. Each individual on campus has a role — from the person sleeping next to you in class all the way up to UK President Lee Todd.

The success of Campus365 depends on every one of those roles being carried out effectively. Some will lead, others will follow. Some will teach, others will learn. Your role may be as simple as showing up at an event to win an iPhone or possibly voting in a mock election.

We hope you will choose to give your feedback in a focus group or survey. Perhaps you will join in a demonstration or attend a town hall meeting. Additionally, you could sign up for the UK Alert system or join a Student Government advisory board to help us address an issue that you feel passionately about. If you are a student who has to balance academics and parenthood, we would encourage you to browse the SGA Web site and apply for a childcare grant (they are due Sept. 22 by 4 p.m. to the SGA office).

All we can tell you for sure is that we need your time, energy, voice, gifts and talents to make this campus a better place to live and learn. We designed this project to allow more students to take ownership in the change we are introducing.

In doing so, we will spread the influence of this student body so that it permeates throughout the university and Lexington communities. Let our legacy of change be one that makes a positive impact on this place. Thank you for believing in us. See Blue. Go Cats.