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The 32nd Administration of the Student Administration Government takes the oath of office at the 2019 SGA Inauguration on Apr. 9, 2019 at the University of Georgia Chapel in Athens, Georgia. The Empower ticket was sworn into office along with senator-elects. (Photo/Julian Alexander)

If you hope to make changes on campus, or simply want to be informed about students who do, the University of Georgia Student Government Association may be of interest to you.

While annual elections also decide who holds office in the SGA senate, the most prominent members of SGA are the president, vice president and treasurer, who run as a joint ticket in the spring during a one and a half week campaign. To distinguish themselves, the tickets adopt some sort of moniker — Believe, Ignite and Commit have been the last three to hold office.

This year’s executive ticket elected in March, “Empower,” consists of president Rachel Byers, vice president Melissa Hevener and treasurer Nav Singh. Byers is the first female SGA president to be elected since Mallory Davis was elected in 2011.

Byers is a junior political science and communication studies major from Monroe, Hevener is a sophomore public relations and international affairs major from the Philippines and Singh is a junior pharmaceutical science major from Stone Mountain.

Student government elections typically have low participation. Last year’s election tallied 6,772 votes, more than 1,000 votes less than the previous year. Empower won about 3,700 of those votes.

During the campaign, Empower emphasized its hope of “bridging the gap” between students and campus resources, as well as empowering underrepresented students.

Empower’s platform included a variety of plans, including working with the Health Center to implement sexual assault bystander intervention, building partnerships with the LGBT Resource Center and other groups on campus and improving mental health support.

Freshmen interested in SGA can apply to first-year programs.

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