Economics and Finance
My name is Matthew Jones and I hope to serve as a voice for our student body as a member of Student Government Board. I am currently a sophomore in both the College of Business Administration and the Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences, studying economics and finance with a minor in Chinese. My involvement with SGB began my freshman year as a member of First Year Council, and I have remained a part of SGB as a liaison of the Allocations Committee. I am also involved extensively in the business school as the Outreach Chair for the University’s foremost investment organization, The Socially Responsible Investment Portfolio, as well as serving as Co-Vice President of Finance of the professional business organization Phi Beta Lambda. This summer I will be interning at Goldman Sachs in New York City as a Sales & Trading Summer Analyst in their Securities Division, where I will get a chance to further explore my passion in business.
I have been a part of SGB since my first year on campus, and it was as part of SGB that I learned how essential accurately representing our student body is. Without a set of people with the sole purpose of giving a voice to those without, then our goals, grievances, or even desires will not be heard. Ensuring that we are heard and that action is taken in the way the student body needs is of the upmost importance and will be my foremost priority as a Board Member.
To delve more into my goals that I aim to accomplish if elected as a Board Member of SGB, they all center around the most important aspect of our campus: the student. To this end, health and wellness is a huge undertaking that is not getting the attention that it deserves. A student cannot perform at a top level, nor even begin to enjoy all that Pitt and the city of Pittsburgh have to offer, if not in good health. We have made strides as a university to promote mental health, but we still have not gone far enough. Working with the Counseling Center to ensure there are dedicated professionals available 24/7, alongside a 24-hour crisis line – especially during exam season – is essential. Not only prompting, but also normalizing usage of the Title IX Office is also a step that needs to be taken as to offer more support for those on our campus. As a final addition, offering free hygiene products and free testing at the Wellness Center next to Nordenberg Hall will allow for less sleepless nights and better peace of mind for all that may need its services.
On the academic side, Pitt has been consistently improving its offerings thanks to dedicated staff and new programs for students. However, even with these improvements, students still have trouble planning out their academic careers or cannot seem to get onto the same page as academic advising (myself included). That is why I will work toward creating a Syllabus Database to allow for easier scheduling and less risk when choosing classes, specifically noting electives. This will help to solve any disconnect between advisors and professors when students ask about classes the advisor may not be familiar with.
The final and most transformative initiative I will champion still revolves around students, but not just current ones. As Pitt increases in rank every year, the quality of our student body and alumni become more and more apparent. As of right now, our alumni network is severely underutilized and current students are not benefitting from the wisdom that past students can impart. By advocating alumni mentorship, there will now be a bridge to connect people that want to give back with people that want to learn. Alumni that want to give back should have an avenue to do so, and students that want guidance, no matter what school they are a part of, should be able to receive it. With no restriction of discipline or specific school, a greater pool of students and alumni will be available, and both sides will be able to benefit from a Pitt education even more.
Some might say that we are just another chapter in Pitt’s illustrious, 230+ year history. I disagree. We will cement our story in Pitt’s history books as one of the most active and successful undergraduate classes this university has ever seen. This is our legacy.
It is extremely humbling to even be considered for a position on Student Government Board, and I will do my upmost to deserve the consideration if elected. I am eager to help Pitt continue on its path to greatness, and I would be honored to serve as a member of Student Government Board. Thank you, and Hail to Pitt.