by Alexandra Purcell
The nursing department at Colorado State University-Pueblo recently appointed two of their outstanding students to serve as senators in the Associated Student Government (ASG).
Students Yamile Ingles and Lindsey Fox, both nursing majors, were chosen by Joe Franta, the Dean of Nursing, and Jude DePalma, the head of the undergraduate program.
“Since we’re officially recognized as a school of nursing now, they wanted to have some representation for the school itself as a senate position,” Ingles said. “We haven’t had much of a voice in the past. I want to change that.”
Since this is the first time the nursing program has had representation in the ASG, Ingles and Fox will be in charge of establishing the position’s purpose “We’re there to try to decide what the position’s going to be about, what the requirements are going to look like, and help set the foundation for the future,” she said.
Fox said she sees the senate position as a way to be a “trailblazer” for nursing students at the CSU-Pueblo campus.
“It’s a great way to get our program involved with the student senate and make sure we get more representation as part of (the College of Education, Engineering, and Professional Studies).”
Since the school was designated as an official school of nursing midway through the year, Fox and Ingles were appointed by Franta, the director of the graduate program, and Jude DePalma, associate professor in the nursing program. Fox said that once their names were chosen, the choice was passed to the board of the ASG, where they were officially voted in.
Ingles said she was selected because she’s served as president of the Southern Colorado Association of Nursing Students for several years. Fox was chosen because she has been in the program for several years and is just now finishing up her final year of her dual masters program in nursing.
Representation isn’t all that the senators are responsible for. In the past, they have helped organize and put on events such as FAFSA night and others. Right now, Fox said she’s working on making the campus a better place for students, which includes pushes to improve Student Health Services, health insurance and loan forgiveness programs on campus.
Ingles is working on a program that will help students with mental illnesses if their medications stop working or if they have a relapse. When this happens, they have to drop out, and Ingles said she wants to help rehabilitate these students back into the university.
While Ingles and Fox will only serve as senators until the end of the spring semester of 2017, they both say they are working hard to leave a legacy for future students. “I would absolutely love to help out in the nursing center while I’m here, make things better for them,” she said.
“It’s not just about the nursing program—it’s about how we can integrate ourselves into the community,” Fox said.