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Welcome Bobcats!

May 27, 2021

Welcome statement from Student Senate President

By Eliza Ivan | Student Senate President

W elcome, Bobcats! I remember being in your shoes like it was yesterday. I remember leaving The Convo and rushing to College Green to take a look at all the possible student organizations to join. I know your experience will not be the exact same as mine, but we do have the feeling of joining the Bobcat community in common. I remember seeing a banner on College Green that day that said, “It’s up to you to destroy bigotry, oppression (and) build community, liberation (and) to fight fascism, capitalism, racism, misogyny, homophobia, transphobia, anti-semitism, Islamaphobia.” Those words have stuck with me from the welcoming weekend in 2017. I knew from day one that this is where I belonged because of that banner, and I am thankful for that set precedent. This is why I am sharing it with you now.

Ohio University has been and always will be a place for students to grow and find more passions. When I went to the Involvement Fair, I had no clue that by the time I go into my fifth year here I would not be in the organizations I signed up for that day or even in the same major (or the major I chose after that one). Since that day I have joined the Student Senate and have held three positions and I am now entering my fourth in my term as President. Since that day, I have also joined Alpha Omicron Pi and have gotten to hold a position on our standards board and Philanthropy Chair for a very untraditional term where I was able to raise money for Black Lives Matter, the Arthritis Foundation and a local women’s shelter here in Athens called My Sister’s Place. Since that day, I got to collaborate with other women in the Political Science field to start a new student organization called Political Science Majors Association in order to have a non-partisan political group on campus. I have gotten the opportunity to study in Northern Ireland -- I never thought I would be able to do that. I did not do any of this until my sophomore year, that is how I know the extent of a student’s potential on this campus. I have gotten to meet so many people and do so much because of the potential granted to me as a Bobcat, and I owe it all to my peers, professors and Ohio University as a whole.

I encourage each of you to fully get the most of your experience here at Ohio University and get started now -- do not wait a whole year like I did! Join student organizations, try out a campus job, go to University events, watch the Marching 110 perform at a football game, go to the farmer’s market, find your favorite local place to eat, figure out which floor in the library is your favorite (mine’s the 3rd floor) and find that hidden gem location to study with your friends. You will soon enough find your Bobcat family and start making relationships and memories that will last a lifetime.

Lastly, if you are looking for a way to get involved as an advocate on campus on a large scale, I encourage you to give Student Senate a look. This year, in summary, we want to further efforts in diversity and inclusion, improve counseling services, create a green initiative, give back more to the Athens community and overall be an advocate for our peers, professors and community as a whole.

As your student body President, I look forward to seeing the passion your class brings to our community and hope to hear your ideas for change! Make the most out of your time here at OHIO and don’t be afraid to start now!

With Bobcat Pride,
B. Eliza Ivan

AUTHOR: Eliza Ivan
EDITOR: Mikayla Rochelle
COPY EDITOR: Anna Garnai
PHOTO: Provided by Eliza Ivan
WEB DEVELOPMENT: Anastasia Carter