Student Senate welcomes new speaker

Analicia Haynes, Administration Editor

From Vermilion County Fair Queen to newly elected speaker of the senate, Hailey Tellier calls on her coincidental expertise to help guide her through this new leadership role.

“I will never do something I’m not passionate about. I love people and I love positivity, and I feel like if you’re not doing something with a positive mind and passion then it’s not going to be (great),” said Tellier, a junior communication disorders and sciences major. “It’s funny how things work.”

Tellier said she has been involved in countless organizations and activities throughout high school and well into her college career, such as being a member of Alpha Gamma Delta and being a student worker that would make any college student feel overwhelmed. Submitted Photo

Tellier also had countless leadership roles including being the president for her school’s chapter of the Future Farmers of America and camp counselor for her local AMBUCS, an organization dedicated to helping people and children with disabilities, where Tellier said she found her calling.

“Camp is the highlight of my summer and those are my kids that I love and care so deeply about and they are so wonderful,” Tellier said. “They changed my entire view on life and that’s a huge reason why I got into speech pathology because if I could work with kids like this everyday (then) I would not work a single day in my life because I love them so much.”

Tellier said she also worked at her local county fair where she won the 2013 Vermilion County Fair Queen and was inspired by the importance of Illinois agriculture.

“I am involved in a lot and I always have things to do but I don’t feel overwhelmed at all,” Tellier said. “I’m surrounded with great people, it makes me happy and I love everything I do and if I don’t love something I won’t do it.”

Drawing bits and pieces of expertise from the knowledge she gained through her experience, Tellier said she is able to see what will work and what will not work for student senate.

“Every leader is different and how everybody runs things is different,” Tellier said. “(But) being able to see all of their ideas has helped me with my own ideas and decide what things I liked and what I didn’t like.”

Tellier said she has several goals she wants to accomplish during her time as speaker which include building a bond between senators and continuing the efforts former speaker Maralea Negron carried throughout her term.

Trying to live up to the foundation that Negron laid, Tellier said she will continue to look up to her predecessor.

“(Negron) was an absolutely amazing speaker and it’s going to be a task to live up to that because I do think very highly of her,” Tellier said.

Among those goals, Tellier said she definitely wants to continue with “senator orientation” because it is a way to get new senators involved and help them understand what is expected as well as the senate “recruitment week.”

However, Tellier said she wants to change the theme of recruitment to target more than just students in one group or who decide to walk by a building where current senators are handing out recruitment flyers.

“I want to be able to go into residence halls and the (Campus Recreation Center) and I want to reach a wide variety of people because I believe we have so many great leaders not only in athletics and Greek life but in different (registered student organizations),” Tellier said. “We have leaders that are on campus but just aren’t involved in those RSOs and I want to reach out to those people because I really want a quality senate.”

Tellier also said she wants to ensure that senators find time to bond with one another in order to promote a better working environment.

“I believe that when you know someone’s strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes you work so much better with them,” Tellier said. “I believe if we had a Facebook group page or a group meet then we would be able to talk and bond on a personal level and it would make us work really well together on senate.”

Tellier said she wants to make sure senators continue to stay motivated whether during office hours or meetings because they are representing the student body.

“I feel like if you’re reminded of why you’re in something then you are motivated do better,” Tellier said. “If we’re not motivated and super pumped with ‘we love EIU spirit,’ then no one else is going to be and our role is to set the standard.”

Along with building a bond between senators, Tellier said she wants to bridge the gap between senators and the student body by opening communication.

Tellier said senators could take the ideas or bills discussed at meetings and bring them to students outside of individual friend groups and ask how they feel about it.

“We need to connect with (students),” Tellier said. “We are their voice and we need to make sure (legislation) is what they want and interests them.”

Tellier said she is excited about starting her new position in the fall and is far from overwhelmed.

“I don’t tell myself I can’t do something and I never questioned if I could or couldn’t,” Tellier said. “I just always said ‘I’m in this position and I’m going to put my best foot forward.’”


Analicia Haynes can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]