Students leave for USF Day at Capitol

By Wesley Higgins, ASST. NEWS EDITOR
On February 12, 2014

 

About 80 students will spend the day in Tallahassee with USF administrators and lobbyists, meeting more than 50 Florida House of Representative and Senate members to talk about USF’s goals and priorities on the brink of the state legislative budget allocation session during the annual USF Day at Capitol.

Emily Schwab, Student Government’s Secretary for Governmental Affairs, left the night before the bus full of students who left campus at
4 a.m. today and said she hoped legislators would see the students were there to push the USF agenda.

The students will lobby for additional funding for the new cybersecurity program, the USF Heart Health Institute, the College of Business building at USF St. Pete and the STEM mathematics and biology program for USF Sarasota.

The students, who came from all three campuses and were briefed on USF’s lobbying agenda, will split into 10 to 12 groups, some manning a table at the Capitol building, while others attend meetings with representatives.

Student body vice president Scott Sandoval said he looked forward to discussing several key points of USF’s lobbying agenda with legislators.

“I hope we represent USF in the best light,” he said.

USF student body President William Warmke said this is his fourth year attending USF Day at the Capitol.

“Every year I take something different back,” he said. “It’s an experience to see the legislative process in action,” he said. “I see the legislative process day-to-day on a Student Government level, but to see it on the state level is a whole new experience. It’s kind of crazy, but beautiful.”

Warmke said student legislature takes only days to process, but can takes months at the state level. An appreciation of the difference will assist him in a career in law or public policy, he said.

“I’m excited. I’m ready to get the point across and have the student voice be heard,” he said.

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