Get to know the new CGA executive board

Jessica Barnett, Asst. News Editor

       The Community Government Association just recently had their elections for the executive committee. Regarding the new members, President of CGA Joar F. Dahn says “I’m looking forward to working with this new team. I do not know who is going to be where yet. Some might get positions back some might not. As of right now I don’t know how it’s going to look like but I am very excited about it”. Amayir Capers, CGA’s Vice President, comments he is “looking forward to this new team working together to achieve our goals and waiting to see what’s going to happen”.Joar, President CGA, is a political science major. When asked if he has any plans for the future he says, “I do have plans. I am contemplating between grad school and law school. Definitely going to law school, debating on going to grad school. I plan on utilizing my major here in America at the local or state level. After getting experience I see myself going internationally and becoming an international politician by practicing my politics in Liberia which is in Western Africa, where I am from.”

      Amayir, Vice President CGA, is a business administration major with a concentration in finance. When asked what his plans for the future are he says “There are two different ways where I want business to place me. Should I go into the corporate world or law school? Stay tuned, I’m still trying to figure it out myself”.

      Joar’s goals for this year as our CGA president are similar to what they were in his first year. He says, “My biggest goal is getting CGA out there and branding them. I really believe I achieved that goal and that was my first goal. I believe that has been achieved because everyone knows who we are. Nobody knew what CGA was, and now we have every seat filled. Right now we have a wait list, which we have never had before. The voter turnout for this election alone was the best voter turnout and we branded CGA.”

     Another one of Joar’s goals was to make CGA more diverse. He says “Diversifying CGA was my other goal. I’m president of multicultural association as well, so I was trying to grow interest with CGA and that as well. More students became interested since I became more active which gave students more reason to be active. Now CGA is more diverse than when I started. There is five Caucasian and five minorities. In the beginning it was just three minorities, now there is much more diversity. That is something I am really proud of.”

     Another goal is branding CGA in the state systems. Joar comments “I say it’s partially accomplished right now. I served the state system as the advocacy chair. I have collaborated with many different presidents and vice presidents from different schools, everyone knows CGA and Bloomsburg’s student government. This led me to believe we are respectable and I am doing something that is recognizable. I wanted to bring all the student governments together. I would like to see other student governments here. We are planning to host the Boarder Student Government here at Bloomsburg University. Last year it was hosted at Kutztown University. We will be hosting speakers and education opportunities. This has never been down before.”

      Many of Amayir’s goals correspond with Joar’s. He says his goals are “pretty much to get CGA more efficient. We are working on something that can help enrollment, pretty much a student ambassador service. We went to various spots in the Philadelphia region and a lot of students said they were coming to Bloomsburg. Now we are thinking about if we could have a direct program to get the resources that can go back to their schools, which would peak our enrollment numbers. Helping create more efficient enrollment and in CGA. Creating ideas and more goals to where they can take classes in essence helping the whole student body.” He comments about another goal he has and that is creating a task force which is “creating a comfortable and inclusive environment to help all minorities.” Overall CGA’s goals are “making sure we guide the student body to where it needs to be,” says Amayir.

      Regarding the task force, Amayir comments on some of the challenges that could be faced. He says “the biggest problem is the notion of push back whenever we bring up the issue of race. A lot of people do not want to talk about it. Trying to engage the students and making them comfortable about talking about race and making them participate in any programs will be a challenge. The engagement of students is a challenge. A lot of students are not comfortable to talk about it. Once we are comfortable to talk about it we are comfortable to find a solution.”

      Getting inside the reason that motivated Joar to becoming our CGA president, he says “I served my sophomore year as an on campus senator and sophomore class president. I started as the president of African Student Association and I branded that association pretty well. I realized my success in both associations and realized how many people I impacted. I asked why I don’t try to impact the whole school, so that was kind of the approach I took. I contemplated if I had time to make it work but what motivated my to do it was my older brother. He was the president at his college and he still talks about how great an experience it was. I knew I had the support of a lot of people from the Bloomsburg campus. I thought a lot about it for a while and talked to a lot of people, and they were all excited for me and willing to support me. I was excited and hopeful about it to try to make an impact on the whole campus and I decided to give it a shot. I was very optimistic and hopeful of this election. The support from everyone and motivation from my brother made me want to be CGA president”.

       Behind the reason of Amayir becoming our newly appointed Vice President of CGA, he says “initially the way I got appointed was when I got elected by the student body. Before being Vice President I was the head coach and founder of the boxing club on campus, so I had the experience of running my own organization and making sure everything’s running smoothly. The CGA Vice President chair was open and 7 or 8 people were running. At the time I wanted to do it but I was skeptical, not only am I the president of the boxing club I am also running things on the side as a coach. Pretty much Joar said I should do it and that I have the qualities for the position. Joar appoints to the senate body and the senate chose me as the Vice President and here I am now. That has never been done before, when the president gives power to the senate.”

       We always look for leadership qualities in positions like those in CGA. Joar comments about his leadership qualities by saying he is a “serving leader with a democratic leadership approach. I gave up the authority and gave that to the senate, in the past the CGA president has never done that and kept the authority for themselves. I could just have appointed Amayir but I did not take that approach so to be fair I gave the power to the senate to interview each of the candidates. The senate ended up choosing Amayir. I believe the senate made the right decision. I try my best to not do things how they were done in the past because I personally do not think a democratic approach was taken.”

      Concluding with some final comments from our CGA president, Joar states “We are hugely appreciative and gratified for giving us the opportunity to serve our student body. The voter turnout was amazing and everyone was shocked. We want to make sure we appreciate them for trusting us to lead them and we want to assure that we won’t let them down”.