by Tess Steele
All Sewanee residents are familiar with the phrase “Ecce quam bonum et quam iucundum habitare fratres in unum” or “Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.” Sewanee, being a very community-oriented campus, takes that motto quite seriously. This sense of fellowship is being looked at in a new light with the recent establishment of the Student Advisory Leadership Team (SALT). The idea for SALT originated at last year’s PossePlus Retreat. The retreat prompted the question of organization interaction. Greek life organization leaders meet weekly, but no such meeting system was established for the leaders of other organizations. Assistant Dean of Students, Hagi Bradley, as well as Barbara Banks and Kate Stucke, were part of the movement to establish a formal council for organization leaders campus wide. Bradley, when discussing the goals of SALT, put emphasis on members to “communicate and collaborate between organizations.” In addition, the discussions will center around current issues facing students.
The leadership component of SALT will be spearheaded by Banks. These meetings will be monthly, with a kickoff lunch on September 23rd with Vice Chancellor John M. McCardell. Over 100 leaders from various organizations will be invited. “There is no time like the present,” said Bradley enthusiastically when asked about the timing of the club. Taylor Baird (C’15) will play an active role in SALT. As president of Inter-Sorority Council (ISC) and a Head Proctor, she has expressed that the main focus of SALT “is to better organize and promote all of our student organizations.” With extracurricular overlap being an issue, the leadership team hopes to improve upon this problem. “I hope that our campus events can be better advertised and attended regardless of the size of the sponsoring organizations,” said Baird. The empowerment of smaller organizations, regardless of Greek affiliation, is also something the team wishes to improve upon. While increasing communication and support among organizations is a main focus for SALT, Baird has also expressed an earnest interest in passing down leadership roles to younger students, forming a more unified school for years to come. “To see that aspect of mentoring and shared leadership at SALT meetings would be a great success in my eyes,” shared Baird.