Each year, an SGA President is elected to work with members of the Student Senate and the Worcester State community to ensure that WSU is serving the needs of all its students. This year, Karen Shalev is serving as SGA President.
Class of 2022, Visual & Performing Arts and Communication, Honors Program
Hometown | Worcester, MA
Campus Involvement | Presidential Student Ambassador, Chabad on Campus, Delta Alpha Pi, Alpha Mu Gamma, 2022 Class Committee, Lambda Pi Eta, Omicron Delta Kappa, VPA Stage Manager
Community Involvement | Rest home volunteer, Sunday school teacher, StandWithUs New England Campus Coordinator
Can you describe the role of the SGA President? What do they do for the student body?
The role of the SGA President is to be the representative of the student body. It is a position that advocates for students at all levels of the University and ensures that the voice of the students is heard, whether by representing our student body or uplifting student voices.
In that capacity, my role involves reaching out to students to keep updated on what is happening around campus. I want to hear from students what are the issues affecting our student body and work together to solve them. Because of that, the SGA President is a role that relies heavily on relationships with undergraduate matriculated students throughout our various areas on campus.
As much as I listen, I also need to keep students informed on what is going on so my fellow students remain an informed public. One of the best ways to stay informed on our campus is by being involved. The SGA President is the person who connects students to involvement opportunities on campus, such as appointments to University governance committees and the Student Senate.
What are some of the goals you hope to accomplish while in this position?
I am extremely excited for what I know is going to be an amazing year. As SGA President, my role is to listen to my fellow students and ensure that the voice of the students is heard.
To that end, it is my goal this year that any undergraduate matriculated student who wants to get involved on campus has the opportunity to do so. In order to get involved, my fellow students need to know what options are available for them, so my goal is to keep open, transparent lines of communication with our entire student body. I am here to be a resource for my fellow students so we can make our campus community the best it can be.
Equity is embedded within all of my goals. Equity encompasses everything and is as important to me as it is to our University. As such, it will reflect in the people I appoint, the positions I create, and the way I communicate. I have already started working with students, staff, and faculty to ensure equity in all things and would appreciate students reaching out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org so they can share with me their feedback.
What do your foresee as some of the challenges you could face in this position?
It’s been a difficult time for everyone because of the COVID-19 pandemic. I also recognize that although we have all been in the same storm, we have not all had the same boat. Thanks to vaccination rates, we are incredibly lucky that we get to have an increased presence on campus compared to last semester, but there is a significant percentage of our student body who are still incredibly negatively impacted by the pandemic, whether they have lost family, are at higher risk themselves or live with/care for someone who is higher risk, or were negatively impacted financially. I also recognize that we are still living in uncertain times particularly because of the surge in the Delta variant. I am aware that these challenges will impact our entire year, yet I am confident that our WSU community will resiliently overcome these challenges to become strong, dedicated leaders who support not only our campus community but also their own communities.
At the end of the year, looking back, what do you hope your fellow students remember about you?
At the end of the year, I hope that I am able to instill within my fellow students the inspiration the two previous SGA Presidents instilled in me to get involved on campus. I am working to ensure that every student who wants to get involved will have that opportunity and I hope our student leaders inspire future student leaders to stand up for what they believe in. I hope that our student leaders continue their leadership journey both here at WSU and after graduation. Most importantly, I hope my fellow students understand how important their voices are and are inspired to use their voice to enact the change they wish to see in our community and in our world.
What advice would you give to students who want to make an impact on Worcester State?
I would advise students to reach out! As SGA President, I am always here for you so please email email@example.com anytime with questions about how to start getting involved on campus or help finding the right leadership opportunity for you. Comments, concerns, and feedback about issues on campus are also always welcome. Your voice matters! As SGA President, I am here to be your resource.
What are your current plans for after graduation?
I will transition from part time to being the full time New England Campus Coordinator for StandWithUs upon graduation, which will allow me an amazing opportunity to expand my support of the New England community. I will also be continuing my studies for my MS in Communication at Clark University.
While I am sad to be reaching the end of my journey here at WSU, I am so thankful for the skills and experiences I have had here and will always cherish my years here. I plan to remain involved with WSU so that I can continue supporting our amazing campus that has given me so much.