The Pitt News

A fresh face: Harun transitions smoothly into new role as SGB President

By Alexis Mazzeo / Staff Writer

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In the wake of former Student Government Board President Graeme Meyer’s resignation, Nasreen Harun has had a bittersweet rise to power. Despite the sad ending to Meyer’s presidency, Harun says she’s prepared to fill her new position.

As SGB’s new president, Harun will work to continue efforts she has previously worked on as executive vice president, including improving student organizations, restructuring SGB and promoting awareness and prevention of sexual assault on campus.

“Since I’ve joined SGB, I have been able to see a lot of ideas come to fruition and I’m excited to help spearhead those efforts,” Harun said in an email.

One of Harun’s first projects while in office will focus on minimizing issues and roadblocks that student organizations often run into, such as hosting events. While she was running for a seat on the Board, Harun pushed for more reservable spaces for students on EMS, Pitt’s online reservations system. This initiative stemmed from the constantly growing amount of organizations on campus. Harun said she wants to work with the administration to meet student groups’ demands for space.

Harun also plans to develop an Executive Board Transition program, which will be in the form of an online course on everything students need to know to launch and manage a student organization. Information in the program will advise students on how to navigate the Student Organization Resource Center (SORC), how to get the most out of the Allocations process and incorporate sustainable aspects into planned events. The structure of this program is still being planned, Harun said.

To further help students, Harun plans to continue efforts to restructure SGB to ensure that the Board is fairly representing the diverse student body and not overlooking student needs. Board members are still determining planning and final decisions on the restructuring of SGB.

Harun will also address some of the initiatives that Meyer began to implement under his presidency, specifically racks for student publications at Pitt, such as The Pitiful News and The Original Magazine.

According to Harun, there were issues with the original supplier of the racks, but the Board is working to have the project completed as soon as possible.  

Also under Meyer’s presidency, members of the Board pledged last October to work to prevent sexual violence on campus. According to Harun, the SGB Wellness Committee has been planning awareness events to continue the fight against sexual assault on campus. Harun serves as a member on the Sexual Assault Task Force on campus and works with students and the administration to combat sexual assault on campus.

Both Harun and Meyer are in Pittsburgh this summer and have been working together on the transition of power since SGB announced Meyer’s resignation on May 29.

Board member Jack Heidecker said the transition between the two presidents has been a smooth process thus far.

“Since SGB has such effective and productive relationships between all members, we’re really well-positioned to continue our successes next semester,” Heidecker, a junior majoring in German and political science, said in email.

Current Board members are expressing confidence in the newly appointed President’s capability, including Jacky Chen.

“Although everybody on the Board was surprised and saddened by the loss of Meyer as president, the Board and I have the utmost confidence in Nasreen’s ability and preparedness to lead in her new role,” Chen, a senior neuroscience major, said in an email.

Harun said Meyer had been a great leader this past semester and the Board will miss him, but she is excited to take on the presidential role, helping other Board members with their projects while also working on her own initiatives.

Heidecker is not unsettled in SGB’s future.

“SGB is more than President Meyer or President Harun,” Heidecker said. “I don’t believe that our goals and initiatives will change significantly because, except for President Meyer, we’re still the same [Board] that was elected by the student body last November.”

 

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A fresh face: Harun transitions smoothly into new role as SGB President