SG Signature Programs

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) - SGA President, 04-05

Signature Program Category:Mentoring, Safe-ride program, Signature Programs
Signature Program Details:1. Safe-ride program

The SafeRide program is one of the premier programs that Student Government offers the student body. This program affords students the opportunity to receive a free ride to their residence if they are either too intoxicated to drive or simply find themselves in an unsafe situation. The annual cost of the SafeRide program is approaching $45k, and is funded from the SG operational budget with the help of a recently renewed $8k sponsorship from Budweiser. Given the national scrutiny and vulnerability of similar programs, the SG Executive Board has interacted with all levels of university officials to ensure continued support of the program. SafeRide is well known and respected by the faculty, administration, and even the Board of Trustees. The university attorney indicated that cutting the program might be more of a liability than continuing to provide its services. What makes the Embry-Riddle program unique is the fact that it inherently insulates itself from liability suits by not funding the transportation to the bar district. The SGA has negotiated a flat rate that students can take advantage of for non-SafeRide calls. The SGA President continues to work closely with the Assistant Vice-President for Development to establish an endowment that will eventually sustain the costs of the program. This summer, a decision was made in SG joint session to use $100k of SG restricted funds as seed money for the endowment. Also, local establishments frequented by students have been identified and will be solicited for support and sponsorship beginning in the spring semester. The goal is to reduce the burden on the operational budget.

2. Mentoring

Last year, Task Force One was developed in an attempt to accommodate the first-year student's overwhelming interest in Student Government. Task Force One is an executive council that reports directly to the SGA President, and is responsible for advising the SGA President on a variety of issues, planning and helping out with events, coming up with new ideas, and offering support for the day-to-day issues that Student Government deals with. It is designed to introduce these students to SGA and expose them to leadership opportunities across campus. This year, Task Force One has been actively involved in campus activities. Members have met with university administrators and have discussed issues particular to first-year students. The group has further discussed issues such as housing policy and dining services. This freshman council is a fantastic way for Student Government to recruit manpower, brainpower, creativity, ingenuity and a plethora of other characteristics that can never come in too much abundance. It is important to engage and cultivate the future leaders of Student Government, and Task Force One is an excellent tool.

3. Student Government Association Service

Just as a real government serves its constituents, Embry-Riddle's Student Government Association serves the student body by providing services that transcend year to year as a tangible symbol of continuous service to the students and university community. These services include but are certainly not limited to banner printing, beverage service, color copying, locker rentals, faxing, general copying, and free local newspaper. In addition to these services, the Student Government programs events at the beginning and at the end of the semester. These programs have consisted of initiatives that are intended to entice new students to get involved at the beginning of the semester and others are intended to motivate the students to finish strong academically at the end of the year. Examples of this are Eaglemania, a student outreach and recruitment program in the fall and Stress Relief Day at the end of the semester to motivate and relieve exam anxiety. Future plans include coordinating resources with the athletic department to sponsor spring athletic events. An ad-hock planning committee will orchestrate and implement a program at the beginning of the semester to welcome the students back from holiday essentially mirroring the orientation of the fall. The developing trend related to the ongoing services is to make the students feel important on campus and that their choice to receive their education here is appreciated.