The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
Plenty of learning happens in the classroom, and I’ve found incredibly valuable lessons in certain courses I have taken. However, I’ve found some of the most meaningful experiences have come from putting myself outside my comfort zone and getting involved in the community, especially the community of Boulder which I was unfamiliar with.
So, I decided to get involved in CU Student Government (CUSG).
As an incoming freshman in the fall of 2020, I knew I needed to get involved and make change on campus even remotely, but I was unsure how to do that. When I learned about CUSG, I was so excited and knew I wanted to be a part of the change they make on campus. One of my friends involved in CUSG told me that while there is the greater CU Student Government, all colleges within CU have their own student governments too, like Engineering, Leeds, and Environmental Design. As a ENVD student, this was a great place for me to begin by running for the Freshman Representative. Before getting involved in the biggest student government in the country, CUSG, as an Environmental Design student, I decided to join Environmental Design Student Government (EDSG). This allowed me to make more friends in my interests as well as make tangible change and host fun events within my college! My involvement in EDSG made me want to be even more involved at CU, so I decided to run for senator within EDSG to be a part of CUSG’s Legislative Council. Unfortunately, I did not win the election, but I persevered and ran in an even bigger election for Representative at Large within the Representative Council of CUSG. After making a platform based on equity and inclusion, putting in countless hours campaigning for myself, and debating with other candidates, I won the election along with three fellow representatives that I am so happy I got to share this experience with!
Running for CUSG was one of the most important things that has ever happened to me. Just by campaigning for myself for a few months, I not only learned more about the CU student body, but myself, too. I was not aware how uneducated I was on how people were dealing with certain social politics and how they are represented on campus. This made me feel inadequate and aware of the improvements that I needed to make in myself. I learned that I needed to be a better ally for BIPOC students. I was held accountable by my peers and new friends through CUSG. If I had never stepped out of my comfort zone, I would not have realized how important it is that I continue to educate myself on topics I had never learned in school.
After joining CUSG, I’m now aware of how much time and effort my fellow students put into making our campus the best it can be. As members of CUSG, we attend intense but necessary meetings and write legislation, all while making sure we are meeting the needs of the student body. Outside of teaching me valuable life lessons such as working hard to make change, speaking for the student body, etc., CUSG does so many things behind the scenes for our campus that most students will never see. CUSG ensures all student voices are heard, whether that is by making student groups and organizations feel represented or by funding new office supplies (and, of course ,our Buff pool at the rec!) for some of the most visited buildings on campus. Almost everything is done by your fellow students! Who wouldn’t want to be involved in such a group of amazing people who really care about making a difference?
This is why I want to encourage all readers who go to CU to check out the CU Student Government website and learn more about what it means to be involved. You can bring your perspectives and experiences to CUSG and use CUSG resources to create the change you want to see on campus. There are positions of all kinds available, and we are always looking for new members who are ready to take action and learn more about their community and new perspectives. For those of you who are not interested in student government, I still want to encourage you to do what you can to make an impact and step outside of your comfort zone, however that looks for you!