The Parthenon

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A farewell from your Student Body Vice President

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Serving as your Student Body Vice President has been the best honor of my life at Marshall University. The experiences since being sworn in have been immeasurable, and I truly want to thank each of you for sharing your Marshall story with me the past few months.

On April 22, I will officially hand over the position of Student Body Vice President to Hannah Petracca. Over the past couple weeks, I have gotten to know Hannah quite well, and I know that she will do a great job as your Student Body Vice President.

For now, however, I want to share with you some closing thoughts as we complete this transition:

First, remember that Marshall is not just a university – it is a community. You are never alone. One of the proudest moments as vice president and as a student at Marshall was helping to organize the candlelight vigil for Larry Aaron. It was a true demonstration of Marshall’s unparalleled sense community. Continue doing this – these are the memories you will remember way after you graduate.

Second, take advantage of what Huntington has to offer you. For example, the Marshall community is quite blessed to have the Huntington Museum of Art, only a 10-15 minute drive from campus. Few students had heard about this, so this month student government took an afternoon to visit there, have fun, and promote this Huntington asset. It was a blast, and I encourage you to stop by if you have never done so. This is just one example – whether it be visiting the museum, volunteering at the AD Lewis Center, or just walking downtown on a warm spring evening, your Marshall experience is incomplete without the experiences found within the City of Huntington.

Third, use your voice. It is your most powerful weapon. There is nothing more beautiful than seeing the Marshall community peacefully respond to hatred on our campus. Moving forward, we must continue to use our voices and be civically engaged. There are some who openly brandish their Marshall credentials on billboards and on TV, yet their actions do not follow our creed nor our principles. We have the power, and we must use this power, to prevent this malice from hurting our state even further.

If we continue doing these three things – and without a doubt I know we will – then I can leave in comfort knowing that Marshall will continue to be the great institution that I have experienced in these past four years.

As for me personally, I will continue fighting for a freer and more economically prosperous West Virginia after April 22. I will still be around, so please feel free to contact me if you ever need help. I am always willing to help (or find someone who can). With that, and like with every good story, it is time for the end.

Never stop fighting for what is right.

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