The deadline to enter the race for Lewis and Clark Community College’s (L&C) student trustee position ended at noon on Friday, March 13. The upcoming election is an important event that all students should be aware of, as the winner will be their voice when addressing the board for the next school year. Dr. Sean Hill, Vice President of Student Engagement, encourages all students to vote for the student they feel would be the best representation for the student body.
Dr. Hill, when asked about specific personalities and traits that are important in a potential student trustee, said, “I think that it’s important for the student trustee to be a good listener, open-minded, someone who’s good with teamwork and can understand that there will be different points of view. Someone who genuinely cares about this institution and its students and will be able to understand and represent different points of views expressed by L&C students.”
The first candidate is Ashtyn Britt, who is running for this position driven by her love for L&C. She brings prior personal experience with two years in a position of leadership, as well as Student Government Association membership the last three years, and she is the current SGA President. Ashtyn is a PTK Honor Society Member and has multiple semesters of participation in Student Activities. Previously, Ashtyn has been an ad manager, writer and Editor-in-Chief for The Bridge, L&C’s newspaper. Ashtyn has experience in the coordination of the very differing inputs from the people providing fair representation through negotiation supporting the projects and systems supporting this role. She has also represented concerned citizens both at Board Meetings and public comment, as well as had the opportunity to work with and learn from the two previous Student Trustees. To determine the best candidate, Ashtyn recommends to “not let popularity bias drive your choice, rather remember the seriousness of having proper representation for you and the entire student body.” She believes her passion, pride and ability to fight for what she believes in will serve the students well and will make the school a better place. Ashtyn believes “the student trustee is the person who will be there to fight on the student’s behalf and be an ear for anyone who needs them, and if there’s one thing I can pride myself for, it’s my ability to fight for what I believe. I believe in Lewis and Clark.”
The second candidate is Trevor Gregory Heuene, who is running for this position driven by his love for L&C. Trevor feels he has a good grasp on the things the people want to see done here at L&C as well as things they want to stay the same. Trevor associates L&C as a hidden gem here in the Metro East area and believes it is a great place to learn. He wants to be a part of continuing L&C’s track record of excellence. He feels his ability to network within the diverse student body identifying and understanding the issues that matter to them. Being active in Honors College from many different programs allows Trevor to engage with a broad measure of students, being uniquely qualified to bring concerns of STEM majors to the table as it is a current major for him. Trevor has a demonstrated history of leadership as having been past President for Edwardsville High FFA Chapter. Trevor feels “his values are closely aligned to many of the students he met with and indicated many were not informed there was a board of trustees that govern our college.” Trevor notes he brings the ability to fearlessly speak and represent the students. To determine the best candidate, Trevor recommends the “students just need to know that he will be there to voice their concerns.” He believes his active engagement in almost all of the board meetings and his knowledge and having what it takes to be a great student trustee will serve the students well.
The current student trustee incumbent, April Tulgetske, said, “This position acts as a voice for the students. I get an advisory vote on the board, and while it doesn’t count, it does give the board insight into how the students may feel about a particular issue. I do my best to represent the students fairly and to put my own views aside.” When asked about how important it was the student trustee interacts with the student body, Tulgetske responded, “Ideally, being able to interact with a larger portion of the student body is a must. Visibility is great as it gives the trustee a better perception of the pulse and views of the students. It also encourages a community.” Depending on what is on schedule, Tulgetske says she spends at least 10 hours every month preparing for the Board Meetings.
The application to run for student trustee required candidates to submit a signed petition that included the signatures of fifty L&C students, a statement of candidacy and letters of recommendation. The other general rules require candidates to be currently enrolled in both Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters, with duties starting in April 2020 and ending in April 2021. The student trustee candidate must have and maintain a 2.5 cumulative GPA. The student trustee will perform duties that require professionalism and respect as they act as a liason for the college board trustees and the student body. They must be available for all L&C Board meetings on the second Tuesday of every month at 7:00 p.m. and a meeting every Wednesday at 1:00 p.m. for the Student Government Association or the SGA executive board.
As of this moment, elections will begin on Monday, March 30 at midnight and will end on Sunday, April 4 at 11:59 p.m. The ballot will be sent out to all L&C students via their campus emails. Students will only be allowed to vote once for the student trustee candidate of their choice. For questions or concerns, please contact Dr. Sean Hill at firstname.lastname@example.org or (618) 468-6000, or Christine Strotheide at email@example.com or by phone at (618) 468-6001.