BC hosts national student conference

Marcinda Coil
December 6, 2006
Filed under News

The American Student Government Association’s Community College Student Government Training Conference visited the Bakersfield College campus Saturday on Dec. 2.
Not only was breakfast, lunch and snacks provided for students who attended the conference, workshops designed to teach student government representatives how to improve their student governments were also available. According to a brochure, “Training focused on” community college needs.
According to Dean of Students Don Turney, it was a national conference with approximately 180 students from all over the nation including BC’s SGA.
“There were about five different speakers,” said Turney. “They all had areas in which they were regarded as national experts.”
ASGA’s founder and Executive Director Butch Oxendine was one of the five speakers who taught “13 Steps to Dramatically Improve Your Student Government” as well as other workshops.
ASGA’s Communications Director Steve Wymer also was a speaker of “Taking Control: Setting Priorities and Getting Results” and “Talk Until Somebody Listens: Be Heard Above the Fray” workshops.
“I gained lots of information from them [Wymer's workshops],” said Maryland’s Higher Education Commissions Student Advisory Council member Jane Carey. “They were very detailed.”
“I liked the workshops on how to do advertising and getting the word out,” said Scott Gilmore, vice president of the student body at Cerro Coso Community College.
There was also Nick Tarrant, author of “Young Leader: Lessons Learned from a Student President,” who spoke about media relations.
According to Turney, “There are always those [workshops] on parliamentary procedure,” which Susan Leahy instructed.
The workshops, according to Turney, “[range] from real basic nuts and bolts to real interesting things.”
Aline Bennett, SGA’s adviser at Atlantic Cape Community College in New Jersey, hopes that students will gain “more knowledge on how to be a more efficient Student Government Association.”
According to student interviews, the workshops have been a great success in empowering future leaders.
“I’m learning a lot of new facts and keys on how to better myself,” said Daniel Poellintz, an officer in Atlantic Cape College’s SGA, “and to bring a lot of information to the table and to make SGA more effective.”
“I had gained some insight into how to represent better for my group and what we could try to do,” said CARE representative Carolyn Reece of Cerro Coso College.
Not only was the conference an opportunity for students to learn more about how to be a leader, it was also an opportunity for BC’s SGA to host the event while invoking leadership skills.
“I want Bakersfield College to be known as the place to go for student government leadership information,” said Turney.
According to Turney, he hopes that BC will continue to host the “Community College Student Government Training Conference” for years to come.

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