Erick Brown wants to help propel The University of Southern Mississippi forward. Tuesday, his fellow students gave him the chance to do just that, electing the junior from Columbus, Miss. president of its Student Government Association (SGA).
“The support, encouragement and guidance I have received from so many different people on campus are things I treasure, and I want to maximize the payoff by serving Southern Miss at the highest student level,” Brown said.
Elected along with Brown were Jeffery McClendon, a sophomore from Greenville, Miss, as vice president; Rebecca Masters, a junior from Ellisville, Miss. as attorney general; Davontae Washington, a junior from Hattiesburg, as treasurer; and Jessica Dominguez, a junior from New Orleans, as election commissioner.
Brown said his two primary goals as president are to inform campus constituents about the existence and function of the SGA, and involve them in its decision-making processes and making the SGA more effective and efficient to better serve student needs in the long run.
“Accomplishing these two main goals will ensure that SGA benefits the students in every operation we undertake, both now and for many years to come,” he said.
Brown said he ran for SGA president to help propel Southern Miss forward and bring people together. “I want to make the overall experience of being a Golden Eagle more beneficial and prestigious for every student who enrolls here,” he said. He also sees serving as president as a way of repaying mentors and teachers who helped him cultivated his leadership and communication skills.
At Southern Miss, Brown is a sociology major, Honors College ambassador and a member of Southern Style. He plans to pursue a career in family medicine after graduation, but won’t rule out carrying his SGA experience into a career in public service.
“I feel that caring for the health of a community is the highest calling of public service, and that’s why I’ve chosen this career (family medicine) track,” he said. “However, serving as a public official will never be ruled out. If a feasible opportunity arises, there's a good possibility I would step up to that challenge.”
Brown cites his father, who serves as a minister and works as an emergency technician, as his greatest role model. He plans to borrow from his example in how he conducts himself as SGA president.
“He’s always been a caring, providing leader in his family, church and community. He cares for the sick and needy in his family, always making sure to show love in the process,” Brown said.
“People in the community respect him, but he never lets his pride get out of hand because he knows his respect comes from his service to so many. I want to earn the same kind of respect on this campus, through the exact same means.”