Leadership Scholars announced

The Office for Student Affairs has announced the initial lineup for the Leadership Scholars Program, a merit-based scholarship for student leaders.

The program, created earlier this year amid controversy in the Student Government Association (SGA), is aimed at compensating students from a wide range of leadership positions on campus with awards that total $5,000 per semester.

Funding for this program was previously used for full-tuition scholarships for the six members of the Student Government Association (SGA) executive board and the editor in chief of The News.

Scholarship recipients for the 2005-06 academic year include three members of SGA’s e-board – President Rogan O’Handley, Vice President for Student Services Susan Dye and Vice President for Administration and Public Relations Krystal Beaulieu. The News Editor in Chief Hailey Heinz will also receive an award.

Two members of the SGA’s e-board did not apply for the scholarships in advance of the April 15 deadline, while another, Vice President for Academic Affairs MJ Paradiso, said he did not receive an award.

Adriana Campos was eligible for a full-tuition reimbursement for her position last year as SGA vice president for administration and public relations. She will receive a leadership scholarship for her new role as vice president for collaboration in the Council for University Programs (CUP). Campos receives a full academic scholarship, so the changes have not affected her much personally, but she has seen both sides of the scholarship debate.

“It’s bittersweet in a way – being in SGA, we lost a lot of that money,” Campos said. “Now, I’m going to be on CUP e-board. I’m going to be like one of those many other e-board members who was doing the work without any other compensation.”

Despite the aim of the new model – to award students across the spectrum of student groups – each of the 50 applications received were reviewed individually, said Director of Student Leadership and Engagement John Silveria.

“It’s not group-related,” Silveria said. “You can’t look at it that way.”

To participate in the program, students are required to maintain a 3.25 QPA and attend a weekly seminar that will focus on leadership tactics.

A particular issue during the creation of the new model was the fact that members of the SGA’s e-board would no longer receive compensation via full tuition waivers.

Three members – or half – of the 2006-07 e-board received scholarships, leaving three without financial compensation from the university for their roles.

Reacting with mixed emotions, O’Handley pointed to the strength of the pool of applicants as a reason that one of the members who applied did not receive an award.

“It’s unfortunate that not all the e-board could get these scholarships,” O’Handley said. “But it just shows how competitive we are in at this institution in terms of student leaders.”

In response to all of the SGA e-board members not receiving an award, Silveria reiterated the point that applicants’ groups were not taken into consideration in the selection process.

“While we certainly value the work that the SGA e-board does, they’re not the only student leaders we’re looking at,” he said.

The lineup for the inaugural class of the Leadership Scholars Program:

Mike Amato, NEURONS (Student organization for behavioral neuroscience majors) Krystal Beaulieu, Student Government Association (SGA) Adriana Campos, Council for University Programs (CUP) Susan Dye, SGA Jamie Greene, Future Educators Conference Jessica Hale, Northeastern chapter of the Society for Women Engineers Hailey Heinz, The News Margaret Kamara, The Onyx Informer (Cultural publication) Thomas Kelly, Kappa Sigma fraternity Ellen Lassiter, the Panhellenic Council Monica Milton, Black Engineering Student Society Rogan O’Handley, SGA Jason Piette, CUP Emily Rodrigues, WRBB (Campus radio station) Laura Tolentino, NU Barkada (Filipino cultural student group)

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