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The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Agency presidents could receive financial compensation

In addition to the agency compensation discussion, two student organizations recognized, various student government positions appointed on Wednesday evening.
Mia Hennen
Student Body President Iris Okere speaks to the Student Senate on Aug. 23.

Student Government Association recently introduced a bill that would provide financial compensation to agency presidents.

The Agency President Compensation Act, authored by Chairperson Aaron Haynes and Student Body President Iris Okere, would provide a $1,000 stipend to agency presidents, with $500 split between the fall and spring semesters.

The eight agencies include Black Student Union, Hispanic American Leadership Organization, Asian Student Conference, Spectrum, First Generation Student Organization, Graduate Student Council, International Student Union and Shockers Vote Coalition.

Haynes said that each agency president organizes student engagement, community service and large-scale campus events while supporting their own group alongside other campus organizations.

“The amount of work that these agency presidents put into their organizations is insane,” Haynes said. “I think for us, it’s only fair and only right.”

Haynes said they decided on a $1,000 stipend because it was less expensive than an hourly payroll among many agency presidents.

Okere said the inspiration behind the Agency President Compensation Act came from looking into sorority and fraternity life, where some presidents and executive members receive stipends.

“When I saw that, I was like, ‘Why can’t we do that for the agencies?’ They put in quite as much work, if not as much,” Okere said.

Student Government Association (SGA) adviser Gabriel Fonseca said there is a special projects fund that carries roughly $10,000 forward each year, which is what would fund this bill if passed; then next year, it would be built into a permanent line item for the budget in the upcoming session.

The Agency President Compensation Act would not apply to other recognized student organizations. Okere also said it currently focuses on agency presidents and not other executive members to recognize the work that presidents do when sitting on a board and overseeing their organization.

At-large Sen. Andrew Bobbitt pointed out that, like agency presidents, other registered student organizations and campus leaders do “work outside of the scope of their traditional job,” such as attending mandatory trainings.

“How do you justify giving one group preferential treatment?” Bobbitt said.

This was a first read of the act and was referred to the Government Oversight Committee after, according to Speaker of the Student Senate Kylee Hower. The Government Oversight Committee is slated to meet on Sept. 13, along with all other SGA committees, subcommittees and senator development sessions.

New recognized student organizations

SGA senators unanimously voted to approve Students Organize for Syria (SOS) and Future Health Professionals of America (HOSA) as recognized student organizations.

SOS, a chapter of a national organization, plans to do advocacy work, spread awareness around Syria and its struggles and give donations and supplies to refugees in Wichita. HOSA wants to empower students to deliver quality health care through networking, mentorship and health-related competitions.


Okere said that over the summer, two executive positions had become vacant: director of media relations, previously held by Noel Hawkins, and sustainability director, previously held by Emma Glover.

Okere said Hawkins has extended her summer internship and “is making professional movements” to advance her career after Wichita State. In her place, Okere nominated Amberly Tran, a graphic design major, for director of media relations; SGA senators unanimously approved Tran. 

The sustainability director position is still vacant.

Olga Lesnik, a former SGA senator and budget and finance committee chair, was unanimously appointed to associate justice.

 The Senate unanimously voted in the following students as senators:

Abraham Summa – international senator

Jonathan Stanger – at-large senator

Noah Carter – out-of-state senator

Na’Khiya Sanders – honors senator

Sneha Tomy – graduate senator

Carson Cruzeiro – at-large senator

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About the Contributors
Courtney Brown
Courtney Brown, News Editor
Courtney Brown is one of the news editors for The Sunflower. She previously worked as a reporter and assistant news editor. Brown uses she/her pronouns.
Mia Hennen
Mia Hennen, Editor in Chief
Mia Hennen is the current editor in chief for The Sunflower. Before becoming editor, Hennen was the news/managing editor. They are a junior at Wichita State majoring in English and minoring in communications and Spanish, hoping to pursue any career involving writing or editing.

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