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Ka’Lon Duncanson Serves USM’s Gulf Park Proudly as SGA President

Tue, 05/09/2023 - 01:28pm | By: Gabriela Shinskie


SGA Gulf Park PresidentFrom Freeport, Bahamas to Long Beach, Miss., Ka’Lon Duncanson has made the most of his time as a student at The University of Southern Mississippi’s (USM) Gulf Park campus and most recently as Student Government Association (SGA) President.

Duncanson always had a passion for community service. He was involved in his junior high school’s local government junior council and his passion for helping others and his community flourished.

“I’m big on community service,” said Duncanson.

In high school, Duncanson was gathering groups and working on small projects around school. He would help clean up campus and paint bathroom walls that were spray painted with graffiti. His leadership role did not stop there, especially when deciding where to attend college.

When looking for schools, he said USM felt like family.

“This is where I want to be,” said Duncanson. “I didn’t even want to look at any other universities. The southern hospitality was it for me.”

Even though he didn’t know anyone at USM, he knew right away that he wanted to enroll as a student. He first toured the Hattiesburg campus. Later, touring Gulf Park, he fell in love with the proximity to the coast. His drive to campus helps him to feel at home with the beach and sunset views. 

He came to USM pursuing a bachelor’s degree in marketing, but his freshmen year started with challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, that didn’t stop Duncanson from making big waves on campus.

He started off as the Vice President of Judicial Affairs, then later making his way to president.

“I didn’t expect to be president. I really wanted to make a difference on campus,” said Duncanson.

Duncanson did just that by starting a student group called Fins and Flippers which is a student organization focusing on scuba diving, snorkeling, marine conservation and community service. The group also participates in monthly beach clean-ups.

In the Spring of 2022, Duncanson was awarded the Student Employee of the Year dedicated for his hard work at the Office of Student Affairs. His organization, Fins and Flippers was awarded the Outstanding Student Organization.

Duncanson also took advantage of USM’s study abroad program, traveling to London in the Summer of 2022. There, he learned about international business and cultural changes. USM has provided him with endless possibilities and his time as a Golden Eagle has allowed him to grow professionally and personally.

“I would describe my time here as a growth period in my life,” said Duncanson.

With a smile on his face, Duncanson continues to thrive as SGA President.

“Being an SGA president for me is an honor,” said Duncanson. “I love being an advocate for students, being their voice.”

Duncanson enjoys what campus has to offer. Events such as the end-of-the-semester block parties, harvest picnics and commencement are what makes Gulf Park feel like a community.

This summer, Duncanson has plans to participate in an exciting internship for Caterpillar in Washington DC. He said working in the Office of Student Affairs has inspired him to pursue his future career. He graduates in December 2023.