College of Arts & Sciences Senator Candidate

Amara Blanton

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Amara Blanton

Junior, BS Global Conflict Studies

"Hi, my name is Amara Blanton, a Global Conflict Studies junior with minors in Cybersecurity Application & Management, Chinese Studies, and Aviation Law. Formerly, I held leadership positions in the Black Students Association and Model UN, and I am the current Treasurer of the Communication Club and student researcher in my department. My time in these positions has shown me the potential we have as students when we are properly supported. During my time as your senator, I would like to develop an RSO Startup Fund for new RSOs, to take some of the anxiety and initial legwork away from the process. I will also utilize Alumni Services to develop a stronger Mentorship Program that connects students with alumni in their field to enhance network building, regardless of major. And finally, I aim to create a “COAS Week”, where students can showcase their respective programs, projects, and work to the public. I am confident that as your senator, I will be the change you want to see, developing an environment of success for all COAS students."

  • What makes you a qualified candidate for this position?

    "My involvement in both departmental programs and a variety of RSOs on-campus, from cultural organizations like the Black Students Association to academic orgs like Model UN and the Communication Club, has equipped me with valuable leadership experience, making me a qualified candidate for this position. I've demonstrated my ability to lead in both established and emerging organizations, providing support to build strong foundations for their future growth. Having navigated the challenges and opportunities that come with being a part of the COAS community firsthand, I understand the needs of our student body. I've observed the gaps in available opportunities and the hurdles many students face without robust networks. Through my experiences, I’ve come to recognize the importance of ensuring that every student can confidently rely on our institution for support in their academic and professional endeavors. My participation in the university's Quality Enhancement Program has further deepened my understanding of industry trends and the evolving landscape of our fields. I've engaged with recruiters, talent managers, and key faculty, gaining insights that have highlighted the need for accurate representation of COAS students. In summary, my leadership experience, firsthand knowledge of student needs, and engagement with industry stakeholders uniquely qualify me to represent and advocate for the COAS student and faculty community. I am committed to ensuring that every student receives the support they need to thrive academically and professionally."

  • What is the purpose of the SGA Student Senate?

    "The SGA Senate plays a central role in shaping the student experience at our university. As the legislative branch of the SGA, their primary purpose is twofold: to innovate and advocate for initiatives that improve campus life within our respective colleges and/or social groups and to uphold the principles of representation and inclusivity within the student body. Each senator within the SGA Senate represents a unique constituency, be it a college, social group, or specific demographic. For example, the Student Veteran senator focuses on addressing the needs of our veteran student population, ensuring their voices are heard and their experiences are valued. Similarly, as the COAS senator, my role is to champion initiatives that directly benefit COAS students, whether it's advocating for academic resources, enhancing career development opportunities, or fostering a sense of community within the college. By collaborating with students, faculty, administration, and external stakeholders, the SGA Senate strives to create positive change and enhance the overall student experience. Whether it's through organizing events, allocating resources, or implementing policy changes, our goal is to continuously improve campus life and address the evolving needs of our diverse student body. In essence, the SGA Senate serves as a platform for student advocacy and leadership, working tirelessly to make our university a more inclusive, supportive, and vibrant community for all."

  • How do you plan to elevate and communicate issues that your constituents are concerned about to the Senate?

    "For starters, I would begin by reaching out to departments within the college and distributing a monthly newsletter for them to disseminate to their students, keeping them up to date on what is going on with their Senators and within the Senate. In addition to this, I will establish an active social media presence, utilizing platforms like Instagram and Campus Groups to share updates, upcoming events, and opportunities for feedback. This digital presence will complement our traditional communication methods, ensuring that all students have access to information and opportunities to engage with their senators. Secondly, I plan to table at least once a month for my office hours, making me accessible to all students and keeping me present for their questions. Also, I will encourage students to engage with me digitally through social media platforms, providing another avenue for communication and feedback. Additionally, I aim to make all public SGA proceedings accessible to COAS students, advertising Senate Quorum meetings and General Sessions so students can express their concerns publicly with a guaranteed audience. Lastly, I will maintain contact with COAS-based RSOs to gather feedback from student leaders within the college on my performance and the performance ensuring that student concerns are meaningfully addressed. Through these constant flows of feedback and student input, I can relay the student perspective accurately to the proper channels, whether that be other Senators or other members of the SGA, such as the Vice-President, Treasurer, or Cabinet. This comprehensive communication plan will ensure that COAS students are always properly informed and represented within the Senate."

  • How will you improve the ERAU experience for your constituents?

    "As your COAS Senator and a fellow COAS student, I'm familiar with the challenges our students encounter daily – from feeling underrepresented in career-building spaces to struggling with limited resources for our organizations. To tackle these issues head-on, I propose focused initiatives aimed at enhancing the ERAU experience for COAS students. Firstly, I aim to launch a stronger Student-Alumni mentorship program. This initiative will facilitate invaluable networking opportunities and offer tailored career guidance specifically designed for COAS students, helping us bridge the gap between academia and industry seamlessly and building stronger networks for career progression. Additionally, I plan to collaborate closely with Career Services to implement a dynamic 'Request-a-Recruiter' system. This program will put the power in students' hands, enabling them to connect directly with recruiters who share their career ambitions. My goal isn't just to boost job prospects but to foster the growth of transformative professional journeys that propel students toward their dream careers. Finally, I'm committed to launching robust awareness campaigns, such as a “COAS Week”, to showcase the achievements and opportunities within COAS programs. These initiatives not only cater to the specific needs of COAS students but also make Riddle a better place for everyone, no matter what their program. "