LAFAYETTE — As Student Government Association president, Kylie Templet is the voice of University of Louisiana at Lafayette students to the administration on matters ranging from parking and campus security to the wait time for library printers.
Yet, looking back to her freshman year, the senior said there is at least one thing she would change.
“I wish I would have gotten involved sooner,” Templet said. “I was a little nervous and a little reserved.”
Templet said she hopes to be a part of a group of volunteers helping freshmen and other students who are scheduled to begin classes Monday connect to the campus — a “thank you” breakfast is part of the effort — and community now rather than later.
“Lafayette is one of a kind,” Templet said. “It’s very welcoming. It’s a lot of fun. You can’t compare it to anywhere else. I want to instill that love in every student. I felt the best way to do that is community service projects.”
Templet and student leaders from across the University of Louisiana System are planning a major service project that offers students an opportunity to give back to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.
The UL System includes ULL; the University of New Orleans; Southeastern Louisiana University, in Hammond; Nicholls State University, in Thibodaux; McNeese State University, in Lake Charles; Northwestern State University, in Natchitoches; the University of Louisiana at Monroe; Louisiana Tech University, in Ruston; and Grambling State University.
The service project will likely kick off in November and is designed “to raise awareness” and funds for the satellite facility of St. Jude’s in Baton Rouge, Templet said.
Templet, who will graduate in May with a double major in biology and chemistry, said her path was set on research and pursuing a doctorate to teach at the university level, but her role in the SGA may set her on a different course.
“Since joining SGA and working with the Board of Regents, I became interested in law, so now I’m studying for the GRE and the LSAT,” she said. “I’m going to apply for both (graduate and law school) and see.”
Templet made an unsuccessful run for student government as a freshman. She attended the weekly meetings anyway and her interest thrived.
“I saw students go to the president and present issues. … I realized they’re the voice of the students,” Templet said.
The SGA collects student fees and votes on expenditures. The organization funds scholarships, as well as provides funding for student events and travel to conferences. It also oversees the use of a student fee earmarked for technology purchases on campus.
Students will soon see new printers in the library, which should help reduce wait time, Templet said.
The library is also exploring wireless printing capabilities but will test the application with its own inventory of lending laptops first, she added.
“Technology is created for convenience, so we want to make sure that students have access to what they need,” Templet said.
The SGA president said that includes access to school supplies. Vending machines stocked with school and testing supplies will be available in the library and at least two other areas of campus later this academic year, she said.
This year, SGA also continues its focus on safety and security with City and University Safety Plan, or CUSP, a new patrol detail that is a partnership between Lafayette and University police, Templet said.
The security detail will increase patrols of off-campus areas populated by students, such as downtown and adjacent neighborhoods, she said, and on-campus lighting also will be increased based on feedback.