GUEST EDITORIAL: Undergraduate Student Government

Nick Wellkamp

Undergraduate Student Body President

Welcome to the Yellow Jacket Family! I am honored to serve as your 85th Undergraduate Student Body President during this exciting year of transition and change.

Tech is in a time of transition as an Institute. Our former president, Dr. G. Wayne Clough, has moved on to become the new Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. He is a great friend of the student body and will be sincerely missed. But Tech will continue to make progress, and we will be in good hands under the leadership of Interim President Gary Schuster. The search process for a new president is already under way, and we will be holding an open forum in mid-September for students to give their input to the search committee. We hope to announce the name of Tech’s eleventh president this spring.

In the meantime, Tech will continue to advance as a premier higher education institution. This fall, we will break ground on a new building dedicated to undergraduate learning and named in honor of Dr. Clough. Reflecting our excellence in academics, Tech is currently ranked seventh on the list of top public universities (U.S. News & World Report), with nine undergraduate engineering programs listed in the top ten. We have the largest voluntary cooperative education program in the nation, and our International Plan and study abroad options are preparing students to succeed in a globalized economy. Our student body demonstrates excellence in leadership and civic service, with over 400 student organizations on campus. And Tech students have earned and will continue to earn national attention for their athleticism, research, and creativity. We have many reasons to proudly call ourselves Yellow Jackets!

Furthermore, it is a year of personal transition for many of you, as you either come to Tech from high school or prepare to leave for the “real world,” so let’s make the most of this year. Come to Georgia Tech Night at Six Flags on September 19th. Wear gold and cheer on your Yellow Jacket athletic teams. Play intramural sports, participate in a club or organization, or do volunteer work. Check out www.cyberbuzz.gatech.edu for more information on campus events and organizations. We have an active, dynamic, and diverse student body, and there is something out there for everyone.

Student Government is always working to improve the student experience at Tech. SGA represents the student voice to the faculty and administration and oversees a budget of over $4 million in student activity fees. There are many ways to jump in and get involved in SGA (no matter your age), such as serving on the House of Representatives, participating in committees that address campus issues or joining the freshman component of student government, FreShGA. I encourage you to visit our website (www.sga.gatech.edu) for more information on all of these opportunities.

I am looking forward to getting to know as many of you as possible and working for you this year. Please do not hesitate to call, e-mail, or stop by the Student Government office if I can ever be of service to you.

I wish you all a fantastic year. Go Jackets!