Year-end reflections of an ASUU President

By By Adrian Johnson

By Adrian Johnson

“The time went thataway.”

Marshal Mcluen

It is a bittersweet experience to wrap up the year. As I prepare to end my administration, I am often overwhelmed at having had this opportunity. It is one of those life-shaping experiences for which I will always be grateful. I believe I can never give back to the U all that it has given to me. It has been one of the best experiences of my life and I will always be indebted.

I’m often asked the same three questions: “What have you learned?” “Do you have any regrets?” and “What was the greatest thing you accomplished?”

The most important lesson I’ve learned is that it is absolutely impossible to please everyone. In fact, the harder one works and the more decisions one makes, the more lives one touches and correspondingly the more lives one can affect-hopefully for the good-but inevitably, the more a fraction will get upset. As president, I have never backed down from an opportunity that would benefit the U, even if it meant inconveniencing or displeasing some faction or another. It is true that no matter what one does, criticism is inevitable. This knowledge came to me early on this year, which brought me to the conclusion that if I worked hard, made good decisions and fought to make the U a better place, then I could leave feeling good about the job I did regardless of the occasional critic.

Do I have regrets? No. I rolled up my sleeves and got my hands dirty as I worked hard and accomplished more than I really thought possible. I have learned from my mistakes and loved the successes. The learning curve is incredible.

I’ve also learned that there are always two sides to every story. Politics always has that sensitive relationship with the media. I haven’t always felt our story got out and many facts were often falsely reported. However, The Daily Utah Chronicle has done its job and we have done ours.

As I look over what we’ve accomplished, it is very hard to say what I believe is the greatest accomplishment. We raised over $25,000 to commission feasibility studies for both a Student Recreation Center and a Campus Recycling Center. We held our cabinet accountable to the highest standards-to being responsible custodians with student fees. There are many things of which I’m proud. Other accomplishments of our administration are:

The Readership Program-starting next year, New York Times, Salt Lake Tribune and USA Today will be available all across campus free to students with an ID card.

The Spouse Card-all spouses of students are now able to purchase a Spouse Card. This card makes it possible for spouses of students to do virtually everything a regular student can do with their student ID card.

Red Book Overhaul-The student constitution is an old and outdated pile of documents. We have made extensive updates to the Legislative Branch Bylaws, Financial Policy and Procedures and Election Policy and Procedures.

Of all we’ve accomplished, I believe I am most proud of my never-ending struggle to form a more cohesive U community from a commuter campus. My dream and my vision is to realize the potential for the U to have one of the most thriving social and academic campus environments. We are a university, not merely a “commuter campus.” I have brought this issue to the forefront of the administration and it was among the top criteria in the selection process for the new university president. Though I’ve finished my term in office, I will continue to push for this cause.

The many accomplishments of our administration could not be listed in this space and could not have happened without our incredible Executive Cabinet. These are students that have given tremendous amounts of time to better the U and they are friends who I love dearly. I would like to dedicate this past year to them and thank them for their passion and their commitment to their school.

In closing, I would like to say that I am a die-hard Ute. My blood runs Ute red. Long-live Urban Meyer. And may the new ASUU administration accomplish all they dream to accomplish. I have no doubt that it will be an incredible year.

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