Florida Leader's Annual Statewide Opinion Survey
the 2002 Survey!
They came through e-mail and snail mail and soon Florida Leader had
piles of them—your responses to the fifth annual “What Florida Students
Think” survey filled our mailboxes and inboxes. Campus leaders offer their
opinions about on-line campaigning and affirmative action. They spill the
beans about credit card vendors and student fees. Get the dirt on Florida’s
public officials and advice on how to nurture up-and-coming leaders. You’re
guaranteed to gain some insight that might help you solve some tough
problems at your school.
To sneak a peek at
additional comments not featured here, visit Florida Leader’s web site at
www.floridaleader.com, or contact any of the leaders who provided an e-mail
address for more info about their ideas.
Improving Quality of Campus Life
Campus leaders have many
responsibilities including making college life an enjoyable experience.
Student leaders know that keeping your nose in the books and studying late
nights can leave you in dire need of a break. Leaders at the University
of Central Florida organize diversions to help students channel tension.
“We give them an outlet for stress, anxiety, and boredom,” says Jennifer
Hall, student director of the Campus Activities Board. “Every other Tuesday,
we have a comedian perform in our Loco’s Restaurant, and on Thursdays we
have a poetry reading we call ‘Thursday Knight Jive.’”
In addition to keeping
the UCF Knights entertained, these events allow collegians to mingle at no
cost. “Because we’re a commuter school, our goal is to keep students on
campus. The activities keep them excited and helps them build better
relationships,” Hall says. “Also, students wouldn’t normally see these
events in the area, or if they could, it would be too expensive.”
On the University of
South Florida campus, Wednesday night flicks enhance campus life. “We
program a weekly series called ‘Movies on the Lawn’ where students can come
out and enjoy a current blockbuster for free and with free food,” says
Patrick Dean, executive director of the Campus Activities Board. “USF is a
commuter school, and the movies bring people back at night. It also gets
more people out of their dorm rooms,” Dean says.
After the film or other
late night events, USF leaders keep students safe with the Safe Team. The
team operates from 7 to 11 every night and shuttles people in golf carts to
their dorms. “A lot of people are concerned with safety, so they give them a
The “Pet Extravaganza”
attracts student pet owners who live off campus and want to enter their cats
and dogs in the 15 categories or “dogegories” in the pet competition.
Attractions such as the Central Florida Dog and Disc Club, Greyhound Rescue,
and the Hillsborough Dog County Sheriff’s Department K-9 Unit appeal to
animal owners. "It’s a fund-raiser and community-service project for the
Mortar Board Senior Honor Society. It could be called a ‘Pet Show’, where
students could basically show off their pets,” says Shellii Martin, Mortar
Board vice president. “Many students like the concept and were able to
relax, socialize, and get away from school work. In the near future, we hope
to donate a portion or percentage of the funds raised to a needy pet
organization such as the Humane Society.”
At Rollins College,
students boogie while eating free chips and salsa and drinking mocktails and
other alcohol-free beverages. The party helps keeps students from drinking
and driving, as well as shows them they can have a good time on campus. “We
held a dance called ‘Salsa Explosions’ as part of Alcohol Awareness Week,”
says Jill Maetzold, a student activities leadership intern. “It showed
students that they don’t have to have alcohol to have fun. It gave students
another option for that night.”
Working with other clubs
can boost your resources, influence, and turnout. Leaders at Palm Beach
Atlantic College understand the advantages co-sponsoring events. “Our
college is very focused on building community, and one of the best ways to
do that is if different departments work together,” says Rebecca McAndrews,
a residential life intern. “We’re always making an effort to include other
organizations in our programming plans. Two heads are better than one
because you get many opinions. It works when lots of people get together and
can give ideas.”
“Working with others
creates unity and enthusiasm,” says Cary Fitzsimmons, a resident assistant
at Palm Beach Atlantic. “It pumps you up and gives you more school spirit.
If you’re enthusiastic, it will rub off.”
The biggest benefit of
collaborating: more money to produce your event. “It immediately raises the
amount of money you can spend—a big deal in a small, private college where
program funds are limited,” McAndrews says.
A lack of funding at
Rollins College makes co-sponsoring events a necessity, says Andrew
Boudreau, a resident assistant. “We work with other groups in order to get
more man power, better event turnout, better marketing, and we’re able to
put on a great event and not have our bank crash.”
At Saint Leo
University, Rosanne Dicicco, resident assistant, says, ”On our campus,
the RA’s and Student Government Union co-sponsor events like the Haunted
House for area children and the Super Bowl party.”
What will most improve life in
Florida in the future?
“The preservation of Florida’s wildlife and natural
environment and in relation to that, better planning of construction of
roads and new housing developments will improve life in Florida for the
future. By not preserving and protecting Florida’s natural beauty,
uninformed and careless development will undermine and undervalue Florida as
—Lydia Johnson, resident assistant,
Palm Beach Atlantic College
“More transportation would improve life in
Florida because a lot of people don’t go places because of the roads.
There's very bad mass transportation in Florida. It’s a turn off when you
come to Tampa. It’s hard to get around if you don’t have your own vehicle.
For some people, it’s not doable having your own vehicle.”
—Shannon Calega, executive vice president of
Pan Hellenic, University of Tampa,
“The quality of life will improve with new
families. Leaders aren’t born—they’re made in everyday life, made in
families, and made in school. New families will produce leaders and then
those leaders will have their families and their kids will go to school and
grow up to be leaders and so on.”
—Philip Berman, committee member of Student
Activities Board, University of South Florida,
In what ways has your group made
campus life better?
"We did a lighting survey
with the captain of the police department at 3 a.m. to show him the lighting
on the campus was unsafe for the students. They soon fixed it."
—Rosemary Howard, Leadership House member,
University of South Florida
"Upper Room Ministries creates a warm and welcoming environment that
helps students find and express who they really are. By creating an
atmosphere that allows students to be free of pressure and expectations,
students are able to find those who are like them and establish friendships
that last a lifetime."
—Brittany Maxwell, Woman's Bible study leader,
Florida Southern College
Copyright © 2006 Oxendine Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved
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What Florida Students Think (112K)