The President’s Student Leadership Advisory Council (PSLAC) gives students the chance to sit down with the president and senior staff a few times a year, including a beginning of the year retreat at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Students are nominated for PSLAC by faculty and staff nominate students, and the students are eventually chosen through the Office of Student Life and the Office of the President.
With President Book entering her first year in the role, students on the committee want to do their best to offer the best insight possible.
"We really serve as the voice of the student population within our respective organizations and also for the greater student body," said senior Janay Tyson, who has been on PSLAC for two years. "I really do think they take those opinions to heart and they really do want to hear not just the positive feedback, they want to hear what are students saying behind closed doors."
Tyson attributes this to President Book’s listening ear, which is something senior Sophie Zinn, who was on the committee last year with President Emeritus Leo Lambert, said she didn’t see previously.
"I felt like before there were kind of certain student voices that were controlling the conversation and their perspective seemed to be louder than everyone else's," Zinn said. "I feel like this past retreat and going into this year, I felt like every voice had equal representation."
Zinn felt like students who were involved in the most organizations had more of a voice than others.
"Not everyone at Elon is super over involved and busy all the time," she said. "Some people are just dedicated to one thing and so being able to have those voices be heard just as much as anyone that's part of five or 10 different organizations."
Junior Fredrick Evans, who is also on the council, is dedicated to five organizations on campus... And thinks having several strong voices is part of being a leader.
"I think that’s just natural, you’re in a group with a bunch of leaders that’s just going to happen," he said.
But to Zinn President Book brings a new feel to the council.
"I felt like she wanted to hear from each person in the council and I, with all respect to Dr. Lambert, he's a great human being, I didn't notice that emphasis on hearing every voice as much," Zinn said. "I think that was something that she definitely brought."
With this change, Zinn thinks it helps get things done.
"The senior staff and professionals at Elon are able to accomplish their goals with students in mind because they can't ignore our perspective if we're sitting there objecting to something," she said.