CENTER VALLEY, Pa. — Matthew Clifford, first-year aerospace engineering major at Penn State Lehigh Valley, was elected as one of the two student senators who will represent students in University College in the University Faculty Senate in 2017-2018.
Clifford first became involved as a member in Penn State Lehigh Valley’s student government association (SGA). He applied to be a student senator because as he said, “it is the next step to help students.” By representing Penn State Lehigh Valley in the University Faculty Senate, Clifford said he hopes to help Penn State Lehigh Valley stay on top.
“Although Penn State Lehigh Valley is a small campus, there are many ways to be involved. Student government was my way to show my love for Penn State. Being involved is fun and worth doing,” said Clifford.
Clifford had to fill out a certification of nomination to apply. Once the application was in, he created an online biography detailing his mission. With the help of his friends and SGA members, he campaigned and received enough votes to become elected.
“As a senator, I have to go to the senate six times a year. When we meet, we break into committees and talk about topics to continue making Penn State fantastic,” said Clifford. “I love this campus. Even as a first-year student, I can tell that Penn State Lehigh Valley is special and I want to represent it.”
As a student senator, Clifford will be the student voice of not only Penn State Lehigh Valley, but all University students.
He credits the members of Penn State Lehigh Valley’s SGA, as well as Michael Krajsa, one of two faculty senators from Penn State Lehigh Valley, who helped him become involved.
“Matthew is an engineering major, but came on my radar by his involvement in student government, his outgoing engaging personality, and his leadership skills," said Krajsa. "He’s a good communicator with his peers as well as with other generations. He cares about the importance of having a student voice and he listens to his fellow students. I know he will be able to articulate their needs and suggestions to the full Faculty Senate."
Clifford is the third student in a row from Penn State Lehigh Valley to be elected as a student senator in the University Faculty Senate, and he said his goal is to continue their legacy.