Courtesy of Laura Anne Bartusiak
Junior Laura Bartusiak, majoring in Mathematics and Spanish, is the Undergraduate Student Government Vice President of Student Organizations for the 2017-18 academic year. In this role, Bartusiak hopes to connect more with student organizations and make them feel supported by USG.
Why did you want to run for Vice President for Student Organizations?
Ever since freshman year, I knew I wanted to run for an executive board position on USG. I loved Tulane and was extremely happy with my choice of university. I really wanted to get involved at Tulane and make a tangible difference on this campus. I ran for VPSO knowing that is was the position I was most qualified for given my campus involvement. However, it was through campaigning that I realized this was the position I was truly meant to fulfill. I spoke with over 20 students orgs [organizations], listening to what they needed from USG and the change they wanted to see on this campus. It became my mission to support all student orgs and ensure their needs were met. I am extremely happy with my decision to run for VPSO and love the opportunity to connect with organizations on campus.
What experiences have you had on USG and at Tulane that will prepare you for this position?
I have had many experiences at Tulane that prepared me for the position of VPSO. From before I came to Tulane, I participated in a pre-orientation program, Greenie Camp, that truly exposed me to the leadership opportunities on this campus. My freshman year I delved into student life at Tulane, writing for Her Campus Magazine, attending TUNA meetings, sitting on the Academic Honor Board and fulfilling the [role] of vice president of programming for my dorm, Greenbaum. My sophomore year I continued to grow as a leader on this campus as a research assistant in an infectious disease lab, managing all transportation for CACTUS orgs and students, and as a senator in the School of Science and Engineering. Being in so many organizations on campus connects me with the student body and helps me see what USG orgs need for support.
What do you foresee as the most pressing issues Tulane’s campus will face in the 2017-18 academic year?
I think Tulane, like many universities across the United States, will face different adversaries this school year. The Princeton Review’s rankings shed light onto a dangerous culture on Tulane’s campus. It will be interesting to see the efforts made this year to create a more healthy environment on campus. Furthermore, I think the release of the Climate Survey Data will illustrate areas of the university that need improvement, and I anticipate the release of that data.
What are the biggest changes students can expect from USG in the upcoming year?
I think students and student organizations can anticipate a lot of positive change this year on campus. In the spring semester, Tulane will be transitioning from Orgsync to Wavesync which I think will make it easier for students to manage orgs. Furthermore, the new student organization handbook was released this semester, solidifying the guidelines for student orgs. Lastly, I am working on creating an organization audit process. This process will help students orgs receive the support they need from the university and USG.
What are your main goals for the year in terms of USG and student organizations?
My goal as VPSO is to connect with all student organizations and make sure they feel supported by USG. I really want to utilize council chairs to communicate with their councils and update the orgs on the different resources available to them on campus. Currently, I am working with the LBC administration to update the constitutions and Orgsync portals of all student organizations. As VPSO, it is my job to support the interests of students on this campus and ensure that they have organizations where they can thrive. I am really hoping to work with smaller organizations to ensure they thrive on Tulane’s campus and have adequate resources. I am extremely excited to serve the student body and support them in the creation and maintenance of their student organizations. As VPSO, I am hoping to support all student organizations and interests.
Is there anything you would like to add?
I ran for USG to be a resource for students and organizations. Please reach out to me if you have any concerns either with USG or a student org.