The release of the new Georgetown University Student Association executive staff appointments, resulting in the consolidation of two positions and the introduction of others, followed the inauguration of GUSA President Trevor Tezel (SFS ’15) and Vice President Omika Jikaria (SFS ’15) on Monday.

The appointment press release distributed by GUSA indicated a minor shift in positions within the GUSA staff, as the once separate positions of Washington, D.C. relations and neighborhood relations have now been consolidated under the supervision of the Secretary of Neighborhood Relations. An Undersecretary of D.C. Relations will report to the Secretary of Neighborhood Relations. Both of these positions will be overseen by Deputy Chief of Staff Michelle Mohr (COL ’15).

“I think just looking at the roles themselves, just basically talking to the neighborhood relations [people], there are a lot of things coming up in the next year, especially looking at the campus plan. … We’re really looking at tackling those issues starting now actually and working our way through them,” Mohr said.

The position of D.C. relations was established during the former administration of GUSA President Nate Tisa (SFS ’14) and Vice President Adam Ramadan (SFS ’14).

“We created our D.C. relations [position] at the beginning of our term because we wanted to better serve students who lived off campus and advocate for students at a more district-wide level. After talking with Trevor and Omika, what they’re doing makes sense,” Tisa said.

As for the effects of this change, Tisa believes the position will take on a larger role this year.

“The Neighborhood Relations Secretary, from what I understand, will have a bigger role to play in the future, which I think is a positive move, so in other words, they’re working on some of the same issues, just restructuring the way it’s done,” Tisa said.

The staff role of Secretary of Student Space is another new addition.

“The Secretary of Student Space is going to be working on a wide range of issues, including campus living options, some of the new buildings and renovations and speaking to the administration about those, as well as looking at how we better utilize study spaces and outdoor areas on campus,” Tezel said.

The position may be especially important in the coming year, as new on-campus housing and junior on-campus living requirements are discussed and possibly changed.

“We think it’s really important to have students involved in those conversations,” Jikaria said.

Notably, new additions to the cabinet include positions of Secretary of Transfer Affairs and a Secretary of Entrepreneurship.

“The Secretary of Transfer Affairs is going to provide a go-to advocacy body for transfer students to help with the housing process and NSO, assuring that they are friendly and include the voices of transfer students,” Tezel said.

Tezel added that the entrepreneurship position will exhibit the budding culture of entrepreneurship at Georgetown and its need for advocacy.

“As the university culture tries to become more innovative and people try to take on projects such as startups and innovations, it’s important to get GUSA behind these students,” Jikaria said.

While talking to students during the campaign, Tezel and Jikaria recognized the need for the representation of certain communities on campus that had not been previously acknowledged.

“By finding students [in GUSA] that were already extremely passionate about these issues, we have further involved them in GUSA in order to use GUSA as a vehicle to advocate and get attention through our administration,” Tezel said.

Despite running in the executive GUSA race earlier this year, Sam Greco (SFS ’15), Zach Singer (SFS ’15), Thomas Lloyd (SFS ’15) and Jimmy Ramirez (COL ’15) will not serve on Tezel and Jikaria’s staff.

Although Singer met with Tezel and Jikaria, a formal role for Singer in the staff was never discussed.

“Trevor and I and Omika met. We talked about it a little bit. At this point, it was, I think, in the best that I wasn’t formally involved in the [staff], just the way things worked out. It wasn’t a shock; it wasn’t a surprise; it was all talked about for a while,” Singer said.

Greco will continue to serve as speaker of the GUSA senate until his term ends at the end of September.

“[I will be] working to make sure that all of us are working hard, improving student life and improve the relationship between the senate and the executives,” Greco said.

Lloyd will be working as a leader with “What’s a Hoya?” and will be particularly active as incoming freshmen get to campus in the fall.

“My job will be to organize diversity programming and expanding the scope of ‘What’s a Hoya?’ [and] looking at ways to make the program more accessible to different student groups,” Lloyd said. “This will be my first time in any formal GUSA capacity.”

Overall, many of the positions remain similar to the former administrations.

“I know, in terms of the positions, that they largely maintained the model we built last year. … I think one of the strengths of GUSA is that every year we expand in some way the services we offer,” Tisa said. “With us, we expanded with the tenant association, the building advocacy with the arts, and, with Trevor and Omika, they’ve expanded into new areas like entrepreneurship, and that’s a very positive step.”


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