98th Student Senate Inauguration and First Meeting

A story will be in tomorrow’s print product. Video should be posted shortly.

But here’s some stuff I had to cut out because of space:

The 2011-12 Student Senate Officers:

  • Student Body President Austin Prentice
  • Student Body Vice President Alex Ehmke
  • Student Body Secretary Martha Pool
  • Senate Speaker Ted Belden
  • Senate Parliamentarian Alex Morgan
  • Senate Chief of Staff Alex Mace

Speaker, Parliamentarian and Chief of Staff were all elected by senators at their first meeting (held after the inauguration).

The 2011-12 Student Senate Committee Chairs (in case I haven’t reported this before):

  • Communications Chair Sam Mansfield
  • Finance Chair Rachel Fox
  • Membership Chair Katherine Ladner
  • Organizations Chair Alexis Goldberg
  • Scholarship Chair Ramon Trespalacios
  • Student Concerns Chair Jaywin Malhi

Some inauguration stuff that’s not in my story:

SMU President R. Gerald Turner on Former Student Body President Jake Torres, who he said represented the student body “in an outstanding manner”:

“This has been a rather remarkable year. If you look on the outgoing president’s webpage, his resume… without Jake Torres we would not have had the Centennial, we wouldn’t have had the groundbreaking for the Bush Library, and a few other things. But seriously, working with Jake, Austin and Katie has been a privilege. Of the many times that the student body needed to be represented and represented well, Jake did an outstanding job on your behalf.”

Turner on Student Body President Austin Prentice, who was wearing a bow tie and white shoes with his suit:

“We look forward to working with a guy who has some great-looking shoes.”

Torres gave Prentice the gift of a horseshoe, per Senate’s tradition of presidents gifting their successors. The horseshoe was given to Torres when he joined the Mustang 11.

“Whenever I first came to SMU, the very first organization I joined was Mustang 11, and all members of Mustang 11 were given a horseshoe. And for me, over the years, it’s come to symbolize everything I just talked about… This has always kept me grounded.”

Some excerpts from Prentice’s speech:

“Having been elected to serve you as Student Body President is a reality that’s just now beginning to ferment. I stand before you as nothing more than just an average SMU student who loves this university and hopes to make it the best university in the country.”

“Now that elections are over, and thank goodness for that fact, everyone is interested in what we will accomplish next year and what I will accomplish as Student Body President. This answer will reveal itself in due time, but not before I look back on the 97 years of Student Senate that are already in the books. My predecessor, Jake Torres, has poured everything he has into this university with a humble heart and an open mind. Jake has served me and the rest of the student body as a mentor, a teacher and a guide, but most importantly Jake is someone I can call a friend.”

“My vision of leading the 98th Student Senate is not one that tries to fill the shoes of Jake or the rest of the 97th Student Senate, because that’s a near-impossible task. But rather than taking the next step in this long succession.”


About Meredith Shamburger

Meredith is a journalist working for the Longview News-Journal in Longview, Texas.
This entry was posted in Administration, Board of Trustees, Student Senate. Bookmark the permalink.

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