The Buchtelite

Uniting UA is the Present and Future Movement of The University of Akron’s Undergraduate Student Government

In an interview with USG president, Taylor Bennington, Bennington highlights Uniting UA along with several other achievements.

By Brooklyn Dennison, Editor-in-Chief

The purpose of the Undergraduate Student Government at The University of Akron is to provide a greater sense of community, Taylor Bennington, the president of USG said in an interview last Thursday.

(Photo courtesy of The University of Akron)

One way that the USG has set to achieve this is an initiative called Uniting UA. Uniting UA, which started this year, is a movement that allows multiple student organizations to come together to create an event or program that will benefit people, Andrew Barry, the vice president of USG said. The only criteria for the event is that it should benefit at least 250 people, he said. The first Uniting UA event was held last Saturday when the AK-Rowdies hosted a tailgate party at a University football game.

Uniting UA strives on creating connections in the community, which is the purpose of USG, Bennington said. Because of this, the entire USG administration is focused on the movement, he said.

Not only is Uniting UA the current focus of USG, it is the future of USG. Bennington said: “Uniting UA is our future plan; it will outlive Andrew and I both. It will be a multi-year thing.”

Uniting UA is one way the USG has sought to build community through a system of three E’s: Engage, Equip, and Empower. Uniting UA is a way to equip students, Bennington said. Uniting UA has its own fund, which is used to equip student organizations to create an event.

Another way that the USG equips students is through an upcoming textbook scholarship. Bennington said the scholarship, which was created during the summer, is a need based scholarship that will be for textbooks. “Textbooks have become a huge burden for students,” Barry said. The application for the scholarship may open up this semester, Bennington said.

To engage students, the USG seeks to connect with students. To exemplify this, the USG is organizing a Student Leader Summit, which will take place on Oct. 25, Bennington said. The Student Leader Summit will call all student organization leaders into one room to talk about the state of the University, he said. Following that, the conversation will continue one Friday a month, Bennington said.

Lastly, The USG also empowers students. The Student Leader Recognition Program, which recognizes student leaders who have made a positive impact on students, is an example of this. If students want to nominate a student leader, they can visit the USG OrgSync page and selecting the Student Leader Recognition Program form to nominate a student.

Bennington is a junior at the University. He is an International Business major. He joined USG because he was interested in avenues in how he can help and assist people. He has been in USG since May 2016, and has been the president of USG since May 4th of 2017. He is from Wooster, Ohio and graduated from Wooster High School.

Barry started USG in February of last year. He is a second-year Political Science and Spanish major who joined USG because he was interested in governing bodies. “I’ve always wanted to make a difference on campus and be in an organization that has a voice on campus,” Barry said.

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