Student Commission Fellows Grant Opportunity for Campus Involvement

By Graham Key, Staff Writer

After months of planning, the Student Commission inducted the original eleven members of the Student Commission Fellows program.

The inaugural fellowship consists of seniors Yesenia Aguilar and Rasheed Hammouda, sophomores Siga Kisielius and Fiona Evans, and first years Blake Beauchamp, James Bui, Jack Fowler, Yejee Kim, Emily Finch, Bailee Wallis, and Megan Rochlitz.

The Fellows program is the culmination of the efforts of Student Commission President and Fellows creator Darrin Camilleri.

According to Camilleri, the concept for the Fellows followed his rise to the presidency late last school year.  At the time, Camilleri searched for a program that could help define his presidency.

“It was established in the spring when I was going through some documents from other student governments and looking at different plans for what I could be working on as president.  I sort of combined some of the programs that I saw and created the fellowship program at K—the idea at least,” Camilleri said.

Camilleri’s primary source of inspiration came from the structure of student government at the University of Michigan-Dearborn.

“They have a different system of student government where student fellowships come from student organizations.  They would send a representative from each student organization to their general body, and they are like the Fellows,” Camilleri said.

The Fellows program as it now exists at Kalamazoo College operates through a system of application and confirmation under Camilleri and Vice President Cameron Goodall.  The Fellows then sit on committees as determined by the StuComm Executive Board.  While the StuComm Fellows do not have voting power, they will otherwise function as commissioners while in committee sessions and are encouraged to introduce individual projects.

To first-year Fellow James Bui, the Fellows program serves dual roles: to serve the student community and to generally consolidate student power on campus.

Looking to the future, Camilleri has high hopes for his Fellows, who he believes can bring something new to the table.

“There may be a lot of people who come and go through this program, but I see more people involved in student government as a good thing,” Camilleri said.