Last week, the John Carroll University Student Union convened to review the highs and lows of their tenure in 2015, as well as welcome the new president, executive board members and senators with an inaugural ceremony.
Former President of Student Union, senior Cole Hassay, started the evening with an outgoing statement reflecting on the ways in which the former student leaders served the John Carroll community.
“I am pleased to report that this is one of the most productive years that Student Union has ever had. The Student Union Senate has passed over 60 bills this past year to improve the experience of John Carroll’s students,” said Hassay. He continued, “This unprecedented effort is all thanks to the dedicated senators that I have had the pleasure of working with over this past semester. They have worked hard – and continue to work hard – to make positive reforms on campus dealing with issues as far ranging from dining to parking to facilities reform.”
After Hassay’s address to former student leaders, President elect of Student Union, junior Will Hudson, took the podium to utter the first words of his presidential term.
“Welcome faculty and staff, student and alumni, friends and family. It is a distinct honor to stand before you tonight. I am truly humbled to serve as President of Student Union. Iwant to begin by expressing my immense gratitude to my predecessor, Cole. Not only for the indelible and important work that he has done for our student body, but for the guidance and friendship he has given me,” Hudson said.
He continued by thanking his doctors who helped him conquer cancer and who were in attendance that evening, as well as his mother.
Next, Hudson addressed his battle with bone cancer. “The hardest sacrifice to cope with, even if only temporary, was my separation from this school. Over the last two and a half years, John Carroll University has helped me to foster my values and form my identity… As the semester slowly passed, it [JCU] began to feel like home more than home felt like home.”
“After my diagnosis and realization that I would have to forgo the fall semester, I didn’t know if I would even recognize myself. I belong in the classroom, the student union office, in the cafeteria, on Warrensville sidewalks at 1 a.m.” Hudson went on to say, “I certainly did not belong on the operating table under my doctor’s knife, or in the chemotherapy suite.”
Hudson said, “I decided to return to John Carroll University and serve as Student Union President because it was what I was called to do. Cancer does not possess a brain, and it does not possess a soul. Therefore, it can defeat no man… the human spirit is the best anecdote. I cannot think of a better way to cure this illness than living the mission.”
Hudson continued by stressing his faith in JCU and the people who inhabit it. Hudson urged that his administration will not be simply goals oriented, but “one driven by justice, compassion and faith,” as well as a community that “embraces mutual respect, openness and honesty.”
After Hudson’s address, the 2015 “Of the Year” awards were distributed. African American Alliance was named organization of the year, Daniel Mascio, former President of Beta Theta Pi fraternity received student leader of the year, Andy Costigan received advisor of the year for his role in Beta Theta Pi fraternity and “Seeds of Hope.”
Junior Madison Chickos received student senator of the year for her advocacy of women’s rights issues on campus.
For more information about JCU’s Student Union, attend their weekly meetings on Tuesday at 5 p.m. in the Jardine room of the D.J. Lombardo Student Center.