Future Political Leaders Get their Start at WIU

WIU knows the importance of student’s voices being heard. The Student Government Association (SGA) at Western makes this possible.

Aaron Terrile is the Chief of Staff for the SGA President. He explained that SGA is one of the only organizations at WIU that is fully run by students. “It gives the students the chance to voice their opinions and write legislation to bring to (the) Student Government Association. Legislation is when senators at (the) Student Government Association bring problems they have to the Senate meeting and try to get their bill passed,” Terrile said.

Terrile is a junior psychology major with a political science minor. He wants to work in government after college and aspires to one day make it to the House of Representatives or the White House. SGA is a great way for WIU students, who are interested in legislation, to test the waters and see if working in government is something they can really see themselves doing in the future.

“What I have gained from the Student Government Association so far is a lot of leadership capabilities. SGA has brought me closer to many representatives on campus and within the community. Through SGA, I met the Mayor of Macomb…Mayor Inman and now I attend City Council meetings every Monday to represent (the) SGA and the (student) community,” Terrile said.

I know that SGA always works for the students’ best interests. Terrile explained a bill SGA passed recently; they voted that at least 50% of parking meters on campus be changed from 30 minute intervals to 90 minute intervals. “The reasoning behind this was before in the past the 30 minute time limit was for students to run inside and drop something off really quick but times have changed and more students are driving to their classes so SGA felt we should raise some meters to 90 minutes to coincide with 50 minute classes and 1 hour and 15 minute classes,” Terrile said.

SGA does more than pass bills though. This year, SGA sent a few members to the American Student Government Association (ASGA) Conference. They also attended a SGA retreat.

“My favorite memory of SGA right now would have to be the SGA retreat. The SGA advisors, president, vice president, chief of staff, cabinet members, senators at large, and the senators visited Horn Field Campus and participated in many bonding activities. We as a group also reviewed Parliamentary Procedure to ensure our Senate meetings run smoothly,” Terrile said.

Terrile explained that the president, vice president, student representative of the Board of Trustees, and 5 senators at large are elected into office at the end of every spring semester. When the elections conclude, the newly elected SGA president then chooses his or her cabinet members for the year. For additional information on WIU’s SGA, visit http://www.wiu.edu/student_services/sga/


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