Dedicated to the success and overall contentment of the Rowan student body, the Student Government Association (SGA) determines what students want and then figures out how to give it to them.
Next school year will see the first female African-American SGA president in radio, television and film major/political science minor, Arielle Gedeon, currently a sophomore. Her identical twin sister, Ayala Gedeon, is also a sophomore RTF major and political science minor who will be serving as SGA secretary.
“I was involved with student government in my high school and so I knew I definitely wanted to continue on that path in college,” Arielle said. “This decision was solidified after attending Rowan’s Pre-College Institute program that my sister and I got to spend six weeks in the summer before attending Rowan. I remember after high school graduation we were already packing up our stuff to attend Rowan, so that was a really exciting time for us. Basically, that program really helped us understand what it means to be a leader.”
These twin sisters are focused on excelling the SGA program and helping students become leaders dedicated to their studies as well as overall success.
Arielle joined SGA immediately after starting at Rowan, winning the election for freshman class senator.
“Originally, I ran for alternative student trustee and lost that election. I cried for a day or two, but I wasn’t going to give up because I definitely wanted to work for student government,” she said. “My main purpose is helping people and so I ran for secretary, winning by four votes, which was really crazy. I’m almost done that role and will be assuming the president position.”
Arielle is only a sophomore at Rowan but has high hopes for the coming years
“I’m on the young side actually, since the other two candidates who ran are going to be super seniors,” she said. “But our previous president before Rbrey [Singleton], Lauren Bitzer, actually ran for president her sophomore year and she was president by junior year, so it’s not completely unheard of.”
Starting out in SGA from the very beginning of her college career, Arielle’s mission is to act as a catalyst for decisions and policies that help students and the university as a whole. She noted that this early start in the high ranks of SGA will allow her time to see to it that her plans of action come to fruition.
In the secretary position, Ayala is determined to help her sister out as much as she can while also improving the overall image of the SGA board.
“I definitely want to push being able to put the image of our board on paper with things like thank you cards to faculty when we go to events,” Ayala said. “I really want to help with the structuring of how things are done, like the voting system and the placards. I want to set the organizational standards of SGA, getting everything to move smoothly.”
With their involvement in several organizations on campus, Arielle and Ayala work towards improving their school and themselves. They are admissions ambassadors and orientation leaders; they work for Student University Programmers and SGA; they also work with Circle K, an organization dedicated to helping those in need via service projects every Tuesday.
Ayala will be the director of social activities next year for SUP.
“I’m really excited to be on the [SUP] board,” she said. “I mainly deal with committee member bonding. I’m going to push to make a SUP yearbook because we make so many memories. Why not have something tangible to take home?”
The twin duo of Arielle and Ayala has become a powerhouse within the SGA and on the Rowan campus as a whole. Namely, the sisters hope to improve communication between SGA and the student body to develop ideas that strengthen the university.
History has been made with the election of Arielle Gedeon as Rowan’s first female African-American SGA president. The Gedeon sisters will hopefully leave a lasting impact on Rowan during their time at the top.
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