The Student Government Association (SGA)

Cishella Durling: Hi, everyone. Welcome to another episode of the Student Affairs podcast series. My name is Cishella Durling, and I am going to be your host again today. I'm very excited to introduce you all to Katie Hayden, who is the president of the Student Government Association here at the University of Louisville. We're going to go ahead and dive right into this interview and first ask you, Katie, what is the Student Government Association and what does it do for the student body?

Katie Hayden: Hi, everyone. My name is Katie Hayden and I'm the student body president here at UofL within the Student Government Association. Thank you for welcoming me to the podcast today. A little bit about what is SGA, so the Student Government Association serves as an advocacy body from the students to administration. Our primary goal is to take the student voice, within the shared governance model of the university, and make sure that our voices are being elevated to the right places within, whether it be administration, faculty, or staff to make sure that the change being made on campus is the change that students want to see and also that, that change is actually taking place. So, also play a little bit of an accountability role.

Cishella Durling: And that's wonderful! I appreciate that last little bit about accountability. I think that it is important as a student body to recognize that we do hold the university to a certain standard. And that is awesome to know that the SGA is the vehicle that we can use to do so. So, what are some specific objectives or initiatives that the SGA is prioritizing in this current academic year?

Katie Hayden: Before getting into that, I'll give you a quick overview of kind of the structure of SGA. So, within the Executive Branch, we have one president and then we also have three vice presidents, the Executive Vice President who oversees the student senate, any issues regarding diversity, equity and inclusion and also serves as our liaison to athletics. We also have an Academic Vice President who oversees all academic resources and advocating on behalf of academics. And then we have a Services Vice President who oversees anything related to a student service, whether it's parking, dining housing, all things like that. And then we also have our Executive Staff.

So, within the Executive Branch, some of our current priorities and things that we're working on throughout this year is really making sure that we're able to get the student body’s voice and opinions. So just this past week, we held an SGA meet-and-greet where students were able to come and meet with SGA, get to know representatives whether it's someone from your college. But also, within the other arms of SGA being the Student Activities Board who plans events, the Engaged Lead Serve Board that's focused around student service and philanthropy and then also the Student Organization Activities Board that works very closely with the Registered Student Organizations on campus. So, we've had a couple of other town halls like that.

Some other pieces that we've been working on is, I've been working with our Services Vice President, Alex, on creating a student app with the University of Louisville Police Department. So really hoping to kind of add that to revolutionize the student experience. So, we're kind of in the demo phase. So, stay tuned for some more specifics on that. I've also been working with our Executive Vice President, Angel, on some Constitutional and Bi-law review. So that's the governing documents of SGA and right now are very long, very confusing. And after talking with Angel, we decided it honestly ended up being more of a barrier to student involvement. So really trying to make sure the rules and policies that we have implemented are following as SGA are as inclusive as possible to all students on campus. We recently held a roll to the polls of it where we purchased buses to transport students to the early voting center at the Expo Center who are able to vote in Jefferson County. So really looking to expand that across Kentucky. I was actually just on a meeting with the council on post-secondary education and then they talked about how closely integrated civic engagement and higher education are so really trying to work on how we can better that across Kentucky. We've been advocating for a train horn quiet Zone behind the dorms over by Ship Avenue. So also waiting to hear some more feedback on that. And then our academic Vice President Sawyer has also been working with Cardinal careers to really streamline the process of job opportunities available to students, whether it be on campus or in the community and really make that a one stop shop. So, those are just a few things that we've been working on, but nonetheless, we're very excited to continue working throughout the rest of the year.

Cishella Durling: Wow. And that was a very long list of initiatives that the SGA is prioritizing this year, and I can't wait to see how some of those initiatives unfurl over the upcoming months. So definitely stay tuned for those. So, in what ways can students actively engage and participate in the SG A to contribute to their campus community?

Katie Hayden: Well, this podcast is actually coming at the perfect time. We have our last senate meeting of this semester coming up on Tuesday. So, the student senate is made up of representatives from all of the academic units here at UofL including our graduate and professional schools. And so those representatives will all come together to vote on the on the final passage of our election rules that govern our student body. and student government elections for the 2024 school year. So, we will be voting on those on Tuesday. That will be a virtual meeting and senate meetings are open to everyone if you're interested in listening along following to see what a meeting looks like. But kind of along with election rules, our election season is coming up and we'll start in January. So, after the beginning of school starts, you will get an email regarding information for elections that will also be housed on our SGA website. So, well, there were opportunities to get involved within your academic unit. But also, I mentioned the arms of SGA thing. If you're involved or interested in event planning, then applying to a position within the Student Activities Board is a great idea. If you like to spearhead service across campus, the Engaged Lead Serve Board is a great place for you. And if you like to just really be involved with students and making sure that they have all the resources they need within their organizations, the Student Organization Advisory Board, it's a fantastic place to get involved, I would highly recommend.

Cishella Durling: Well, thank you so much Katie for taking the time to talk to us about the Student Government Association, some of the initiatives that you all are working on and informing us how students can get involved with the SGA. So, we're going to go ahead and wrap this up with. Did you know that you can get involved with various student government initiatives? So be sure to check out their new website to find out more about the current and upcoming initiatives. All right, everybody, thank you so much for your time. I appreciate you always when you come and listen to our podcasts and thanks again to Katie and the Student Government Association for all of the hard work they do to represent our student body. Everyone take care and be safe during this holiday season.


Student Affairs

SAC W302

University of Louisville

Louisville, Kentucky 40292

Office Hours

M-F 8:30am to 5:00 pm

No holiday hours


tel (502) 852-6933

tel (502) 852-5844

Inclusion Statement