Cody Westphal changes how TCU looks at SGA

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    Cody Westphal’s accomplishments in his two terms as student body president are leaving an impact on the whole TCU community.

    As president, Westphal said he changed the way the Student Government Association addressed problems and spent its budget.

    Students said before Westphal took his position as student body president, the organization was very closed off and didn’t look to meet the needs of students.

    “It was a very closed environment,” said senior political science major Alex Cohen. “It was very cliquey and we did stupid things that didn’t help students at all.”

    SGA faced a major change after a controversy with student body president Brent Folan in 2012. Folan was suspected of spending $50,000 of unauthorized SGA money on the SuperFrog statue that sits outside the Brown-Lupton University Union.

    “After that scandal, Cody was the one who really made a positive change with the restructuring,” Cohen said. “He started with social projects instead of just focusing on how we spend our budget.”

    Since then, SGA has made changes to its overall structure to focus on student feedback.

    Under Westphal’s presidency, SGA has made resources easily available to students, from providing free scantrons and blue books in the library to free coffee during finals week.

    “We try to spend money in a way that serves everyone,” Westphal said.

    SGA gets a budget of about $700,000 to help fund student organizations, shuttles to the airport, the fall concert and student ideas.

    SGA was able to get the funding for an idea pitched by junior social work major Erin Jacobs about creating a “Before I die…” bucket list wall for her fellow students.

    Jacobs said without the help of SGA, she would not have been able to see her idea turn into a reality.

    “They were the resources I was looking for to make this idea a reality,” Jacobs said. “They were the most helpful of anyone I have talked to thus far.”

    Senior engineering major Zach Madel said he thinks Westphal’s previous involvement on campus has made students more aware of SGA and what they can do for the students.

    “Cody’s significant previous involvement on campus, massive social media presence and second term as president have made the student body more aware of SGA than it has been before,” Madel said.

    Westphal has taken initiatives to help student voices be heard by advocating issues that are important to them.

    “Not On My Campus” is one of the most well-known campaigns Westphal has helped bring to the university.

    Students were asked to take a picture of themselves with “Not On My Campus” written on their hands in hopes to spread awareness of sexual assault on campus.

    Westphal said he is proud of his initiative to start this campaign on campus because it is a way to unite all the students for one single cause.

    “There are very few organizations that have the ability to unite all students. That’s where student government comes in,” Westphal said.

    Other seniors finishing out their last term in SGA said they have helped make a difference with the help of Westphal.

    Cohen said he thinks SGA focuses on the motto of the former mayor of Fort Worth, Bob Bolen: “Leave somewhere better than you found it.”

    “I think that speaks volumes to how SGA and how TCU in general run,” Cohen said. “I think we are all just excited to be a part of the community that we really love to serve.”

    Westphal said for as long as he can remember, he has had a drive to serve others and is proud of the accomplishments he has made while in his position.

    After graduation, Westphal plans to work for Deloitte Consulting in Dallas.

    The graduating senior, who plans to work for Deloitte Consulting in Dallas, said he was glad he had the chance to positively impact the TCU community. He said wherever his future takes him, he will continue to serve others.

    “Whether that means one day I go into public service, or whether it means I’m a really good little-league coach or a stellar volunteer at a charity I’m passionate about, it doesn’t matter to me,” Westphal said. “All that matters is that I’m doing something to make my community better.”