You already know you have a loud voice on your campus and one that deserves to be heard, but do you ever wonder how you can amplify that voice? Here’s the secret…student government!
That’s right, the same people you vote, or don’t vote, into office each year are the ones with connections to the campus, your professors, the staff, and the administrators.
Tip 1: Get to know your student government.
As with state and federal government, you have representation in your student government, students who are often just waiting and waiting to hear from students about what matters to them. So go and talk to them (they often have office hours) or drop them an email.
Tip 2: Attend student government meetings.
Okay, we all know they can be long, but hey, they’re a great group to spend time with. As much as they may know about the campus and its issues, this may be a new one…and, believe us, they want and need to know about it! The meetings will have a public comments section where students can come in and make a few statements to the group. It’s a great way to be heard.
Tip 3: Resolutions, resolutions, resolutions.
Now that you know them, find out how you can get a resolution passed to support your tobacco control work…or even a specific policy your Task Force is working on. As you know, this group is listened to by your campus’ administration!
Tip 4: Don’t stop.
No matter what, don’t give up. Just because you may meet your senator or someone else in your student government who is not as passionate about tobacco control as you, or may even oppose what you are doing, don’t stop. You are advocating for the health of your campus – students, faculty, and staff. And you have the information. You know most students choose not to smoke and most students prefer to socialize in a smoke-free environment. And you know most students who smoke want to quit. So, keep talking, keep meeting people, and keep putting out the message that tobacco control is important for your campus.