Alicia Pettis: SGA Vice President Elect

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JMU’s SGA Major Elections only concluded this past Thursday and already the student body is excited about their newly elected executive officers. There’s a good chance you saw the candidates and their campaign teams around campus in distinctive t-shirts and handing out all kinds of promotional material on the Commons and the Quad. I was fortunate enough to get in touch with our student body’s next Vice President, Alicia Pettis. A sophomore sociology major from Fairfax, Virginia, Alicia gave me a glimpse of what she has in store for next year and how she plans to invest, innovate, and inspire: 
Her Campus: What motivated you to run for an executive position in SGA?
Alicia Pettis: My involvement in SGA has not been just within the duties of my position as Secretary of Class of 2014. I have expanded my role by joining University Committees and being a part of the QEP (Quality Enhancement Plan) discussions. I found that I really enjoyed what Exec did, so I started going to Exec meeting every Thursday. It was a great experience to see how and why the big decisions that moved our organization were made. I figured that my love for Class Council events and the working Administration combined nicely to fit the Vice President position. 

 HC: What was your favorite part of the campaign?

AP: TEAM IN, our campaign team! I loved working with all of them. They gave us so much of their time and energy, which kept me moving. I'm pretty sure campaigning is one of the best memories I will take away from my years at JMU.
There is nothing like a team working together and having those "ah ha" moments. It was “INspiring”, but that’s just my shameless plug! 

HC: What are three of the things you'd like to accomplish while in office and why?
AP: One is M.O.S.T., which stands for Major Organization Success Team. This team will consist of representatives from each Front End Budgeted (FEB) organization on campus and meet once a month. Through these meetings, organizations will be able to create more awareness of their mission, develop collaborations, gain support and be more successful. I believe this is an important team for SGA to facilitate because we want to provide not only money as a resource, but also support.

 Secondly would be to connect more students to administrators.I want to do this by creating more opportunities for students to work with both Administration and Faculty. Through appointing students to different committees and commissions, they will be able to represent their perspective. I also am planning to design a program for students to shadow Administration to help students gain more insight and connections. I have discussed this with Dr. Warner and hope to have more discussions with other administrators as well.

Lastly, Class Council is something that I have been a part of for 2 years. I hope that this year I can make SGA even more visible through more events. Some new events I have planned involve finding your “JMU Voice”, learning about the history of JMU, teaming up with alumni to learn about personal finance, and a Ring Ceremony in the fall. I also hope to revamp the Tree Lighting event by partnering with groups on campus to represent different holidays celebrated around December to create awareness of these cultures. 

HC: And lastly, what is your favorite thing about JMU in three words?
AP: “Open door policy”. In the sense of JMU opening the door to the future and literally people opening the door…now that is positive support!

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