ASUN President Spencer Hartman shakes hands with outgoing student body president Thien Chau at an installation ceremony in early April. Hartman and his running mate, Internal Vice President Laurel Oetken, were elected by a margin of nine votes in a March student government election. 

This story is part of a Daily Nebraskan New Student Enrollment special edition. 

For students wanting to make a change on campus, the Association of Students of the University of Nebraska can be a place to start.

ASUN is UNL’s student government and is meant to serve as a voice for the university’s student body.

While students can get involved with the organization in its Senate or in an executive position, there are other options available.

The Freshmen Campus Leadership Associates is one example.

Made specifically for first-year students, FCLA is a group of up to 24 freshmen students who serve as a liaison between the freshman class and ASUN. Students in FCLA serve year-long term and are introduced to the operation of student government, which can pave the way for future involvement in ASUN.

“FCLA is a great way for students to learn more about ASUN and develop leadership skills,” ASUN Sen. Josie Jensen said in an email.

Jensen, currently a sophomore, began serving in ASUN as a freshman.

“Starting my term was terrifying because I honestly didn’t know what I had gotten into,” Jensen said. “Once I felt more comfortable with the procedures, senate meetings became my favorite part of the week. I looked forward to the weekly debates and hearing about exciting things happening on campus. I also made new friends who I couldn’t imagine not having in my life.”

Students can also get involved with ASUN by applying for open positions on committees in the fall. Committees manage issues such as campus sustainability and student fees and range from the Campus Life and Safety Committee to the Environmental Leadership Program.

“I got involved by joining a campaign group in the spring of my freshman year,” Jensen wrote. “I would encourage anyone asked to join a campaign to say yes because it is an incredible way to meet ambitious and caring people.”

Jensen said ASUN is a great opportunity for incoming students because it introduces students to different parts of the university and is a mechanism for making a change on campus.

“Because of my involvement in ASUN, I feel more connected to campus and obligated to make it a welcoming and safe place for everyone,” Jenson wrote. “I would recommend getting involved in ASUN because the experiences it offers and knowledge it builds are rewarding.”