Student Government leaders deliver “State of the University” speeches

Christopher Massana

Student Government President Robert Huffman addressed students and faculty in front of the campus bookstore on February 5th for his State of the University Address.
Student Government President Robert Huffman addressed students and faculty in front of the campus bookstore on February 5th for his State of the University Address.
Student Body President Robert Huffman recapped a year full of tradition building and accomplishments to a half-empty courtyard.

On Tuesday, Feb. 5, Huffman, alongside SG Vice President April Turner, former football head coach Howard Schnellenberger, and Campus Governor Ella Tepper delivered State of the University speeches in front of FAU’s bookstore. The speeches were delivered to an audience of less than 50 students and faculty, and several empty chairs. The event lasted less than 20 minutes, but many lingered after the speech ended, hoping to score an autograph from Schnellenberger or a free slice of pizza from the tables.

First up at the podium was Tepper, who provided a recap of SG projects from her term, such as scantrons in the library and last year’s Student Government Safari Hunt for Survival.

“I encourage you all to take pride in this campus and the university as a whole. Your time here at FAU is what you make of it,” said Tepper. “I’m honored to serve in this role and look forward to an exciting remainder of the spring semester.”

Turner introduced Huffman before he began his speech.

Huffman spoke about his accomplishments during his term, beginning with his goal coming into office.

“Our campaign platform was based around marketing FAU’s opportunities,” said Huffman. “Your student leaders and I wanted to leave FAU in a better place than we found it, and that was always our driving force each and every day that we walked into the office.”

Huffman continued to discuss other accomplishments throughout his term such as the presidential debate watch party in October, the 24-hour tailgating party in November, and the renovation of the All-Night Study Center (Hillel) in December.

The speech was originally supposed to occur in October, according to the SG Constitution Guidelines, but was postponed indefinitely at the time.

“It was supposed to be at the 24-hour Tailgate, but it started to rain, so we decided to postpone it,” said Huffman. “We were going to do it later, but we didn’t get the right atmosphere that we were hoping for.”

A few of the students that attended the speech expressed positive reactions.

“I think Huffman brought this university to a higher level, and I think that he’s probably going to pass the torch to somebody who can also excel [sic] this university,” said Daniel Chapman, a sophomore secondary education major. “I think he’s laid solid groundwork.”

“I actually appreciated it, them updating us on what they’re doing,” said Carolyn Augustin, senior finance major.

In his closing words, Huffman made a request to the student body.

“If there is just one thing I want you to remember from this speech, please let it be the importance of getting involved and challenging yourself to be a leader,” said Huffman. “And I quote, ‘it is what it is, but can become what you want it to be.’”