Gannon student learns leadership through campus involvement

Nov 7 • Features, Top Stories • 285

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Many students who first come to college are faced with a multitude of choices they have to make. These include choosing a major, learning how to live independently and, of course, how to get more involved on campus.
Ryan Young is a sophomore biology pre-medicine major from Punxsutawney. So far, in his two years here at Gannon, Young has gotten involved with many organizations on campus including SGA and Tennis Club, and he is a resident assistant.
Young’s involvement in the Gannon community began with him joining the SGA.
“When I first came to Gannon I was unsure of what I wanted to be involved in,” Young said. “When I discovered SGA, I could tell the organization was filled with positive, like-minded individuals who I wanted to surround myself with.”
With an organization focused on community, excellence and growth, Young was able to find a group of students who he best identified with through their values.
Upon joining, Young immediately created a petition and ran for the freshman class representative position. He was elected to the position, and now, one year later is the vice president of student engagement for SGA.
“In SGA, I thoroughly enjoy the community that is built within the members of the organization,” Young said. “I also really enjoy the professional and personal development that I have gained through SGA.”
As the vice president of student engagement, Young is focused on strengthening the campus environment through engaging students to become more involved on campus. This year, Young has aimed to strengthen the communication channel between the university and the student body.
“I’ve been able to do this through creating a sense of connectedness and unity among students by celebrating the Gannon family, and creating an open dialogue about different life experiences to aid students in gaining new perspectives,” Young said.
As a resident assistant, Young said there are more benefits to the job than free room and board. “I am able to impact the lives of my residents in a positive way,” Young said. “I’m a role model for them, and am able to form meaningful relationships in which I can support them.”
Young also says that through being a resident assistant, he is able to have the opportunity to be connected with numerous individuals that he wouldn’t have been able to meet outside of the residents halls.
“I am able to help build community and enhance these students’ Gannon experiences,” Young says.
Campus involvement is very important for students to not only get to know others, but to improve upon their skills beyond the classroom. Students like Young, who are involved in their campus community, not only form relationships with other students, but also learn the tools to become leaders and change the world once they enter life after college.
“Campus involvement has helped me grow in my personal and professional development, experience new things and find a positive group of peers,” Young said. “It has also allowed me to feel as an important part of the Gannon community.”

 

GABE FULGENZIO
fulgenzi004@knights.gannon.edu

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