From left to right: SGA Senators Taylor Peterman and Andy Cabistan with Senior Wish winners Salina Guzman, Kelsey Trudel, Whitney Maxwell and Stephanie Sayler.

Armstrong's SGA Grants Senior Wishes

(May 11, 2012) The Armstrong Student Government Association (SGA) granted wishes to five lucky seniors on April 23, 2012 as part of the SGA Senior Wish initiative, a program designed to give a gift to Pirates at the end of their college careers.

Senior wishes with a monetary cost are categorized as Golden Wishes. The winners of this year's Golden Wishes included Lauren Baxter, who wanted an Armstrong alumni T-shirt and car decal, Salina Guzman, who plans to purchase two pairs of BOBS shoes and Kelsey Trudel, who majored in education and will buy supplies for her future classroom. For the class of 2012, going out into an uncertain workforce means that every little bit of support helps. Fellow Golden Wish winners Whitney Maxwell and Stephanie Sayler will use the funds to buy professional clothing.

“It means the world to me,” Maxwell, an education major, said. “Being at Armstrong has prepared me to be a great teacher, and this gift will help me to fully prepare for interviews and eventually my job.”

Sayler, who majored in psychology, agreed. “It's very important to be dressed professionally when looking for a job,” she said. “This will be a great addition to help me interview and network.”

The Senior Wish program also considers wishes that don't have a monetary cost, called Silver Wishes. These require permissions from administrative departments, such as the police department or Student Activities, and will be given out during next year's run of the program.

SGA senator Eckard “Andy” Cabistan, a sophomore, came up with the idea, and with the help of fellow senators and junior biology students Arianne Gauthier and Taylor Peterman, the project kicked off this semester. The Armstrong Foundation sponsored the wishes, thanks to Vice President of Advancement Scott Joyner who offered to allocate funds to the program.

“Seniors stress so much in their last semester,” Cabistan said. “I said to the SGA, ‘Let's give them something that will make their day.' We want students to leave Armstrong with awesome memories.”

Seniors eligible for the program must have a 2.5 GPA and be involved with at least one school organization or club.

“People have all kinds of wishes,” Cabistan said. In a survey conducted last fall, students wished for a variety of things. From swimming in the Student Union fountain to scholarships to gift cards, requests ran the gamut.

When asked what he will wish for during his senior year, Cabistan laughed and said, “I would go teach a Zumba class. I love to dance.”