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Leadership Highlight

Leadership Highlight: Rowan University’s SGA President Brianna Reagan

Photo Credit: @Jmichelle.g

In an effort to highlight the people who are leading colleges and universities across the nation, we at Watch The Yard reached out to Rowan University and did an interview with Brianna Reagan the 2023-2024 Student Government Association president.

The position of SGA president is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes in being elected by their peers to lead. Reagan, who is doing a double major in Journalism and Africana Studies as well as a minor in Pubic Relations, is from Camden, NJ. She is a proud Fall 2023 initiate of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.

We interviewed Brianna Reagan, and talked to her about her position, goals, future and what it means to hold this type of leadership position in 2023-2024.

Photo Credit: @Rowanuniversity

Read the full interview below.

What is the biggest thing you’ve learned as an SGA president so far?

The greatest thing I’ve learned so far as SGA President is that you will not be able to please everyone but give your absolute best making decisions for the greater good of the student body that best represent their wishes and concerns.

What made you decide to attend Rowan University for undergrad?

I decided to attend Rowan University when I was given the scholarship through the depart of Educational Opportunity Funds Program. It is then when I knew, staying in New Jersey for my undergraduate degree was my best option to stay close to home and remain cost efficient in my undergraduate years.

Photo Credit: @thestoryofesther_

How has Rowan University molded you into the person you are today?

Rowan University enhanced the person that I am today by providing me with endless opportunities like fostering relationships with college friends, networking connections for future endeavors, becoming an advocate for the importance of student voices on campus, and becoming a soror of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Incorporated. Because of Rowan, the person I am today knows how to command the room, understand how deserving I am to stand in the room, and to achieve all goals I put my mind to like becoming SGA President.

Photo Credit: @josh.akiii

What specific initiatives have you headed up this year (or are planning) and how do you think they will improve the school and surrounding community?

This year, I planned a networking event named Prof Pride Full Circle. Where undergraduate students in BIPOC communities connected with BIPOC Alumni to bridge the gap between the two and aid students in finding mentorship that is not only related to the field that they seek to be apart of but with people who look like them as well.

How is your SGA administration/school currently working on attending to the mental health of students?

Rowan University Administration does their best to promote positive mental health strategies for students through our Wellness Center. They also focus on some of the needs of students that could affect a students mental and emotional health. Areas like food insecurity, Rowan has a student pantry (The SHOP)where students can visit once a week and grocery shop neccesity items for their dorm rooms. The SHOP is also extending to neighboring campuses like the Camden Campus to reach more students. In areas like financial insecurity, Rowan Univeristy offers Emergency Funds where students can fill out a form to recieve an emergecy stipend for aid in most financial obiligations you may have. Like many schools, in areas, Rowan can advance in ways to prioritize the mental health of students like offering additional jobs other than becoming a Resident Assitant to waive housing for commuter students or students who do not have proper shelter. It would also be beneficial to hire more staff to offer aid to the students as our institution continously grows. Although in ways Rowan can lack in areas, they make it a priority to take suggestions from students on how it would be best to imporve.

Photo Credit: @photog_hawk

What does leadership mean to you?

To lead by example for the people who plan to follow in my path. A leader is someone who considers others, knows what their jobs entails, and gives credit where it’s due to their team beside them.

We now live in a digital world, what do you think schools need to do to represent themselves online in 2023/2024?

Being so that we live in a digital world, I feel that schools have adapted to this way of living to their best ability. I believe that schools as well as neighboring communities lean too much on the digital world because of how convenient it is. Although the digital world is very convenient, people are forgetting what it means to make geuine connections because the digital world is not as transparent or realistic as we see it to be. I feel that schools have to do a better job at helping students come out of their shells to aid in-person relationships like events and common areas. The world is becoming a place where it is more difficult to seperate digital from reality. The plus side of the digital world is that Rowan’s Machine & Artificial Intelligence Virtual Reality Research Center located in our South Jersey Tech Park is state of the art equipment for students to study research and development projects, community projects, and Senior Engineering Clinic projects. Digital advancement like VR will help students advance their ability of studying and retaining information from their classes. This is a great start!

Photo Credit: @Jmichelle.g

Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black students and college culture?

Watch The Yard is important to Black Students because we are in the midst of crucial turning points in our lives where we live with a double consciousness. Trying to succeed in a nation that creates barriers for people of color to do the exact opposite. During college a lot of students of color are learning to, if they have not already mastered, code switching so that they are not taken over by imposter syndrome. In times like this students of color forget their importance, value, and uniqueness because it isn’t advertised as much. Watch The Yard gives Black students a sense of something they can relate to in college. No matter if you’re at an HBCU, PWI, or Community College. Watch The Yard opens the door for Black students to feel like they have a place to be transparent of their experience with people who look like them, as well as transparent with their selves. Watch The Yard is important to Black students because it reminds us of that sense of culture that is easy to forget when you’re surrounded by people who don’t have the mental capacity to understand what it is to be a Black College Student.

What do you plan on doing after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to seek out my real estate license to become a real estate agent. I will also stay involved with the community through journalism and in politics through Public Relations. Before, I used to think that my goals were too big and now I know that everyone else’s imaginations are just too small. For everyone out there who’s overwhelmed about what’s to come post graduation, don’t worry, you’re skilled, you’re capable and your destiny will come true.

We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Brianna Reagan for her work as the SGA president of Rowan University.

Share this on Facebook and help us highlight Brianna Reagan and Rowan University.

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