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Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Hey Gators!

Welcome back to campus, and to UF22, welcome to the Gator Nation. I am so excited to get back to work and to see everyone on campus. I hope each and every one of you has a successful and enjoyable Fall semester. Football season is getting ready to start, and I can’t wait to be back in the Swamp surrounded by orange and blue. I have a feeling we are going to be really good once again.

To the incoming class and those I have yet to meet, my name is Ian Green and I’m your Student Body president. I ran on a platform that aims to push UF to be better — intentional inclusivity, professional development and flexible student resources. My team and I have been working hard all summer to move Gators forward, and we’re ready to continue that dedication into a great Fall semester.

This summer, we’ve worked on a lot. Coming up in September is our first joint meeting with the Gainesville City Commission and the Police Departments. It will take place Sept. 4 in the Reitz Union Chamber and looking forward, we aim to have regular meetings each semester. Student Government Productions (SGP) and the Accent Speakers Bureau have also been hard at work. On Sept. 7, SGP will host its first concert of the semester. I can’t tell you what shows they’re planning just yet, but we have some amazing speakers and artists coming to our campus soon. And speaking of artists, don’t forget to buy your Gator Growl tickets. This annual homecoming concert is a long-standing tradition and is sponsored by SGP.

Chomp the Vote and External Affairs have been working hard to bring speakers and plan events to get students engaged in the upcoming local, state and national elections. Civic Engagement Week is coming up from Sept. 7 to Sept. 14, and I encourage all of you to get registered to vote, research the candidates and voice your opinions. A part of this initiative for supporting student engagement in elections, an Regional Transit System bus route will be changed to give students more access to early voting. Additionally, we are working to get an early voting location right in the middle of campus.

For those of you looking to get involved in SG, Fall staff applications are opening. SGP apps are already open and close Friday. Chomp the Vote and External Affairs also have applications open, closing Monday. Accent, Action SG, Gators Going Green, Gator Innovator, Internal Affairs, Nightlife Navigators, Students Taking Action Against Racism, The Big Event and YLC are opening their applications today, and those are due by Sept. 5. Last but not least, Freshman Leadership Council staff applications open today and close Sept. 7. I highly encourage Gators in the Class of 2022 to apply for this Council. I was a member, and it really helped me to develop my leadership skills and put me on a path to serve this great university.

Beyond this, Senate elections are coming up. Stay on the lookout for information on how to interview to slate with a party or register as an independent. If you don’t think SG is for you, but you still want to get involved on campus, there are many organizations to get involved with. With more than 1,000 student organizations, everyone can find a home on campus. Getting involved in the Florida Cicerones and the Black Student Union had a huge impact on my college journey.

To help kick off the start of Fall, there are some of the big welcome assemblies coming up, I encourage everyone to attend: the Hispanic & Latinx Student Assembly on Aug. 29 at 6:00 p.m. in the Reitz Union Grand Ballroom, the Black Student Assembly on Aug. 30 with doors opening at 6:00 p.m. in the Phillips Center for Performing Arts, the Asian American Student Assembly on Aug. 31 with doors opening at 5:30 p.m. at the Phillips Center for Performing Arts and the Pride Student Union Welcome Assembly on Sept. 3 at 7:30 p.m. in the Reitz Union Grand Ballroom.

That’s all for now Gators but stay on the look-out for more updates from SG. We’re going to keep working hard so expect updates on our initiatives like more locations for free-printing and more options for kosher- and halal-friendly food on campus. Until then, and as always, go Gators!

Ian Green is the Student Government President at UF. 

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