Newly appointed Student Government Association (SGA) President, junior Richard Harris, has big plans. A corporate finance major, Harris chose Spring Arbor University as he delved deeper into his faith during his junior year of high school. “I didn’t want to feel threatened for my beliefs at a secular school,” says Harris, who hails from Rochester Hills, Michigan. “I wanted to nurture and grow them.” Of the schools Harris visited with his family, he cites SAU as the most welcoming — by the end of his first visit, he knew he would attend.
Harris’ interest in corporate finance springs from his involvement in high school student government and debate, endeavors that allowed him to develop and explore his interest in becoming a lawyer. He’s long had a knack for negotiation and mediation; in high school, he was part of a group that handled student disputes, mediating situations before their escalation into conflict and administration involvement. “People just need someone to talk to, someone to listen,” says Harris. It’s a perspective he’s applied to his life, and it’s informed his approach to the SGA presidency.
As president, Harris hopes to leave a long-lasting program structure that facilitates cooperation and communication among students within the same majors and departments. The idea is that upperclassmen have made connections with faculty and administration, have experienced the 300- and 400-level courses, and can counsel and advise those new to SAU. “With any luck, these relationships and connections will continue after graduation,” says Harris. His experiment in legacy begins this fall.