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SMC appoints student to Board of Trustees

Kaitlyn Rabach | Monday, April 29, 2013

The Saint Mary’s Board of Trustees appointed junior Malea Schulte, a studio art major, as the 2013-2014 student trustee April 19.

Schulte will begin her term in June.

Saint Mary’s is one of very few colleges to have a student on the Board of Trustees, current student trustee Alyssa Vinluan said. The student trustee is a full voting member and her opinion is weighted as much as that of every other Board member.

“I think the fact that the College has a student trustee speaks to the mission of the College,” Vinluan, a Spanish and secondary education double major, said. “The mission strives to help women develop their talents and make a difference in the world, and the student trustee position is a perfect example of that.”

Vinluan, who served on the Board for the 2012-2013 term year, said she was on both the Mission and Student Life Committees. Schulte said she has not yet been assigned to a committee.

“Being on the Board gave me a different perspective of the reasoning behind every decision that the College makes,” Vinluan said. “Every decision that is made is made with the [College’s] mission in mind.”

College President Carol Ann Mooney said it is important for the College to have a student trustee so students’ voices can be heard.

“Having a student on the Board provides the ongoing opportunity for the Board to hear student perspectives, something that is obviously key to their work,” Mooney said. “But just as important is that having students on most major college committees provides an important educational opportunity for our students.”

Vinluan said her experience with the Board taught her a lot and influenced her post-graduation plans.

“What interested me the most about being on the Board was the fundraising aspect,” Vinluan said. “I was able to participate in the Faith Always, Action Now campaign, and it made me realize I have a knack for development.”

Vinluan said being on the Board enabled her to meet great people who are passionate about Saint Mary’s.

“The Board members are so inspiring,” Vinluan said. “They include some Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame graduates who have done a lot for the College and are excellent role models. I was very happy to introduce [Schulte] to them at the last meeting.”

Schulte participates in several activities on campus, including Bellacapella, the Intercultural Leadership Certificate Program and Campus Ministry. Mooney said this extent of involvement made Schulte an excellent candidate for the position of student trustee.

“[Schulte] was chosen from an unusually-strong pool of candidates for the breadth of her campus activities,” Mooney said. “This gives her knowledge of a cross-section of students and their interests and activities. In addition, her maturity, thoughtfulness and very strong letters of nomination helped me make my decision.”