Caleb Hylton is the President of the Student Government Association at Seminole State College’s Lake Mary campus. In this interview, he shares with David’ Fernandez some of the highlights of his current tenure, which is about to come to an end.
What are some of the tasks of being President of the SGA ?
I lead us in conducting weekly meetings for the public, to inform our students of what is going on around the college but, also, informing them about opportunities that we have currently: both on and off campus. We have guest speakers come in at meetings and this allows students to meet administration, so that they may voice their questions to the college authority.
What do your peers do?
The VP heads CoP meetings; the Treasurer manages the funds and events, and then it breaks down to the chairs: the Student Life chair, that allows inclusive and safe campus; Student Services chair helps connect students with the different services we have on campus, and they help poll the student body for issues or concerns. The Marketing chair keeps social media and advertising up and running well.
What do you discuss at meetings?
Each chair has a committee meeting which meet: Student Life on Tuesdays and Marketing and Student services meet Thursday, and then we have our E-Board meetings, which are our business meetings for clubs who want budgets awarded to them and for any faculty who want SGA to cover what they are doing.
What has been accomplished to help the Student body around the Sanford/Lake Mary Campus?
First and foremost, we followed up on what the previous board had been working on. We were able to get the water filters for water bottles for the water fountains. After we resolved that, another problem arose: our recycling wasn’t being recycled properly [because] we didn’t have a regular system; so, it went in the trash because there was nowhere else for it to go. We were able to work with the campus to get recycling on all the campuses and we were able to change the way it functions and that we have more recycling bins. I say that for every trash can, there is a recycling bin. We also got together after the Pulse attack, and listened to the student body’s ideas to remember the victims. We were able to set up a memorial wall in the Student Center, and we hosted a “Keep Dancing Orlando” event. One of the biggest issues lately is with Feminine hygiene products accessibility and free printing for students based on credit hours. Our diversity group is working on a concept for some students who don’t feel safe: we want to set up a sort of safe space on campus and be directed to resources that might assist them. We are proud to host over 30 clubs and organizations. This year we’ve been really proud of our Hispanic Student Association. It’s almost like they’ve risen like a Phoenix. They hold weekly meetings. Another thing we are tackling is making certain we have diverse scheduling. Our other major club Sigma Phi Gamma, they are a social, volunteering, networking club, they have managed to hold several successful club collaborations at events.
Do you ever work with the other SGA groups at the other campuses? If so, what do you work together on?
I also serve on the College Advisory Council. We meet once a month. It is our way for the Student Voice to reach the administration directly. I also travel to Tallahassee to look at legislation being passed in Florida Congress, and see what bills may affect us around the school. The biggest one we are worried about now is Senate Bill 374 as it may take away SSC’s Bachelor’s Programs. I want us as Students to be heard by our representatives.