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Senate confirms student regent; a second coming next year

By Kristen Roberts
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
April 14, 2000
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PHOENIX-ASU economics junior Mary Echeverria was confirmed yesterday by the state Senate as the next student regent on the Arizona Board of Regents.

"She really has the pulse of the students," said Steve Cecil, the communication director of the Arizona Student Association.

Cecil said he was pleased to see Echeverria confirmed because she will bring more of an undergraduate perspective than the last few student regents, who have been graduate students.

Echeverria said in an earlier Senate hearing that she will involve students from around the state, including graduate students.

She said her goals are to promote distance learning to help address Arizona's population growth, advocate a classroom focus on students and support measures to ease transitions between Arizona's community colleges and universities.

Echeverria will begin her one year term as a voting regent June 30, replacing University of Arizona law student Christine Thompson.

Cisco Aguilar, Associated Students president, said he has confidence in Echeverria's dedication to fighting for all state students.

"She's really interested in finding out what the U of A campus is about," he said.

Last week, Gov. Jane Hull signed into law a bill that will add a second student regent to the Board for the 2001-2002 school year. The second regent will not vote for the first year of the two year term, but be apprenticing in preparation to become the voting student regent.

"I'm so pleased that it happened so quickly," Cecil said.

He said he thinks the new position will be helpful to students because the voting regent will have had a year to learn about the Board before voting and because the student will be able to express students' viewpoints even before having a vote.

Aguilar said ASUA officials researched the position and modeled it after the California system.

After Echeverria's term, a Northern Arizona University student will be selected as the voting regent and a UA student will be the first to serve a two-year term.

Kristen Roberts can be reached at Kristen.Roberts@wildcat.arizona.edu.

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