Bossier Parish Community College’s Student Life Director and Student Government Association (SGA) brought home two national awards from the 2019 Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities (APCA) Conference last weekend in Orlando, FL. Student Life Director Marjoree Harper received the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Student Government Association (SGA) won the National Event of the Year Award.
The Lifetime Achievement Award is given to outstanding student life professionals for service and dedication to the field of student activities. Harper has been Student Life Director at BPCC for 21 years.
“I am honored to receive the Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities (APCA) Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Harper. “I certainly could not have achieved this award if not for the help of so many people – my family, co-workers, agents, artists, students, and other Student Life professionals. I share this award with them because I cannot do my job alone, it really does take teamwork.”
The SGA’s award-winning event, “Diversity & Awareness Series: Positivity Project,” was a campus-wide event for National Suicide Prevention Week. Positivity boards were placed in various buildings sharing suicide prevention information as well as providing an area for sharing positive messages with the campus community. Students, faculty, and staff were invited to leave a positive note of encouragement for someone in need or to take a word of encouragement, if needed. This event was part of “Caring Cavaliers,” a community service driven event series that provides students with opportunities to give back to the community.
Gavin Hendricks, vice president of BPCC SGA, said winning the event of the year award was an incredible experience.
“Suicide and depression impact many people, but if we all stand together, we can make a difference in people’s lives.”
Hendricks personally knows how suicide can effect loved ones. His brother took his own life in 2015. Hendricks said his brother felt like he was a burden to others and he wanted to end the pain. However, as Hendricks explained, “the pain did not go away, it only transferred to every single person who loved him.”
That is why Hendricks and the other SGA members were so passionate about this campus-wide event.
“One little act of kindness can make an incredible difference to someone else,” said Hendricks. “A smile, a compliment, a little sticky note can change someone’s whole world. It changed mine. Seeing people come together and want to uplift strangers and build a sense of community on campus gave me so much hope. For a brief moment as we were writing sticky notes to people whose faces we could not see, our hearts were filled with love, hope, and the longing to make a difference in the world. To be that difference is amazing.”
The BPCC Student Government Association (SGA) encourages meaningful participation in student activities, to represent and execute the student will, and to promote the general welfare of self-government. SGA members are elected by the student body and represent all BPCC students by providing input into College policies and College management. The Office of Student Life provides programs and services which aid and enrich the educational and cultural experiences of the student body. BPCC Student Life Program Coordinator Tiffany Sandifer is the sponsor for SGA.
APCA promotes campus engagement through quality educational experiences, affordable entertainment and community service initiatives. Throughout the year, APCA hosts leadership development workshops and campus events planning conferences and offer top of the line educational sessions, exhibit halls, and live showcases, providing opportunities for colleges and organizations to network and meet new vendors and artists for campus event planning needs. Last year, more than 600 schools and 2000+ students and higher education professionals attended APCA conferences and institutes.