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Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Staff Senate president looks to continue culture of advocacy

Kennedy Rogers. Courtesy of wichita.edu

Earlier this semester, Kennedy Rogers, then-president-elect for Staff Senate, received a message from Jason Bosch, then-Staff Senate president. He delivered the news that she would be stepping into the presidential role a little earlier than expected because he was leaving.

Rogers said it was “good luck” that she was already preparing to become Staff Senate president when Bosch announced his departure.

When Bosch told Rogers he was leaving, she said that he was “very intentional” about the transition of power so senators and constituents were not left in the dark.

“(Bosch) was trying to make sure that I had everything I needed so that when he had his last day on campus, and he was fully transitioning into his new role, we were trying to minimize as much of the shift as possible,” Rogers said.

Because of how Bosch prepared for his departure, Rogers said that “it was a good transition” to her first meeting as president in February.

Krissy Archambeau, vice president of Staff Senate and director of operations and processing in Admissions, said Rogers handled the transition with “so much grace.”

“She did a great job of covering things and trying to get herself caught up,” Archambeau said. “She really put some work in to try and not cause any disruption.”

As Staff Senate president, Rogers has standing meetings with different campus groups and administrators like President Richard Muma and Provost Shirley Lefever.

“There are just different spaces and places that we’re all advocating or talking with staff members and trying to know what’s going on in the world of higher ed,” Rogers said.

Jacob Mendez, interim assistant dean for student success in the College of Engineering and Staff Senate secretary, first met Rogers when she ran a leadership conference in 2018 and asked him to be one of the speakers.

“My first impression and my impression today are very similar,” Mendez said. “She’s always been very thoughtful, kind and positive. And I will say (she is) very strategic with how she engages and structures her programs and her initiatives to make sure she’s really serving the people.”

Mendez said Rogers is very easy to talk to and a “natural facilitator and leader.”

“She is always approachable and has a smile, but is not afraid to ask tough questions of people in power,” Mendez said.

In her professional role, Rogers is the director of strengths, assessment and staff experiences for Student Affairs, which allows her to “connect” students, faculty and staff with their strengths.

“I think she has a passion for helping other people find a passion,” Gabriel Fonseca, former Staff Senate president, said.

Rogers said she is the kind of person who “was interested in everything.” A youth leadership summer camp she attended as a teenager allowed her to find her own passion in helping people discover who they are.

“I kind of fell in love with this concept of identity development and who people are and how we sort of come into our own,” Rogers said. “And college is a really natural environment for that.” 

Rogers is now focused on finishing out the year and creating more professional development opportunities for staff, one of the goals set by Bosch at the beginning of the year.

“I’m hesitant to say one way or the other on what we’re going to focus on in the next term just because we’ll go through elections right now,” Rogers said. “We’ll do some more discovery of what the constituents and what staff on campus are wanting to focus on.”

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About the Contributor
Trinity Ramm
Trinity Ramm, Managing Editor
Trinity Ramm is the managing editor and former sports editor for The Sunflower. This is her second year on staff. Ramm is a senior English Lit major and a sociology minor with a certificate in film studies. In her limited spare time, she can be found at the movie theater, browsing some obscure film database or crocheting. Ramm uses she/her pronouns.

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