This is my official hello to the La Follette community or, at the very least, those following our new La Flog. My name is Holden Weisman, and I am the current Vice President of the La Follette School Student Association (LSSA). As one of my many random duties, I will now be providing you with weekly updates on the goings on of LSSA, the School, and other random little thoughts that pop into my head. Please feel free to comment, ask questions, and interact with these posts, so we can open together a two way street between the board and the La Follette community in general.
I’ve been asked by the creator of our La Flog, Nate, to introduce you to some of LSSA’s short- and long-term goals for La Follette students. Let me start by saying that we on the board are continuing down a path laid out just a few short years ago when LSSA began the process of formalizing a constitution and broadened its scope beyond the board’s traditional role as the coordinator and fundraiser of our graduation. LSSA is now truly a student organization able to fulfill our official RSO mission statement “to improve the quality of life for La Follette School students and joint degree students taking courses at the La Follette School of Public Affairs.”
With this in mind, LSSA is furthering this mission by setting out plans falling in three general areas: 1) Social and Outreach Coordination, 2) Academic and Professional Development, and 3) Administration. All plans being developed by LSSA are created during public meetings of the board and are largely developed in consultation between board members and non-board members. In depth details of all short- and long-term plans will be officially elaborated on as they are formalized.
The latest board-approved action plan and the current constitution are attached as links at the bottom of this post, but generally speaking here are a few things to be looking forward to being introduced, though this is by no means a comprehensive listing:
- On the Social/Outreach front, expect more summer activities to be planned as well as more opportunities for incoming first years to get acquainted with continuing students and maybe even some lingering alumni in the Madison area. Volunteer and social opportunities will be undergoing a serious upswing as orientation draws closer in August.
- As for academic and professional development opportunities, the groundwork has now been laid for the La Follette mentoring program to get under way. Information on how to get involved with this program has gone out to continuing students and will be directed to incoming students as the new academic year approaches. Also coming with the start of a new year is the opening of LSSA’s Policy Committee, which will help coordinate and maintain the success of the Policy Roundtables started last year. Keep your eyes open for details on this Committee and the Roundtables later in the summer.
- Lastly, to keep the ball rolling on clarifying and establishing the evolving role of LSSA and the board, in the coming months the LSSA board will be voting on an official budget for the current board term and a new Constitutional Planning Committee will be introduced to seek input from students on where we go from here during the ongoing formalization process.
If you have any immediate suggestions or questions, please feel free to let me know. Otherwise, I truly look forward to hearing from and working with everyone throughout the year.
Have a wonderful summer!