SGA President and Vice President Cultivate a Campus Community that is ‘Better Together’

by Shelby McGuire

Meet your president and vice president of Student Government Association for the 2018-19 school year: Ryan Smith and Clara Costello. Smith and Costello ran their campaign unopposed, and claimed their new titles at the SGA election chapel last February.

During Smith and Costello’s campaign, posters, T-shirts and stickers could be spotted around campus sporting the slogan “Better Together.” Smith said this is more than just a slogan, calling it an “anthem of Christian community.” The vision for “Better Together” is for Cedarville University to be a community of believers doing life together, coming alongside one another and encouraging each other in their faith in a deep and authentic way.

“‘Better Together’ was born from our early discussions as a team,” Smith recalls from last year’s campaign. “The main purpose of SGA is to develop campus morale and foster community … we wanted our campaign slogan to fulfill the purpose of SGA if we were elected.”

“Better Together” means supporting all communities on campus, from encouraging students to join student organizations and discipleship groups to promoting campus events and building relationships in the dorms. SGA wants to encourage students to get involved and reach out in whatever ways  they can to live better together as one Christ-centered community.

Smith said the mission behind “Better Together” comes from principles in the Bible; “God commands that the brothers and sisters live in harmony, and it is important that people join for the sake of accountability, encouragement and joy. We all have something to learn and someone to love.”

Costello said that cultivating this community will take effort on the behalf of SGA and the student body, but she desires every Cedarville student to own the attitude that “building community is worth my investment.”

“I’m really passionate about seeing memories shared, friendships strengthened, and barriers of sin being broken,” Smith said. “If I can witness these things in the lives of students, then I will praise the Lord and call it a successful year. I’m excited to see people doing life together in authentic Christian community.”

Shelby McGuire is a sophomore journalism major and Campus News Co-editor for Cedars. She enjoys working out as well as feeding her caffeine addiction pretending that she has her life together.

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