Sonoma State University student Emily Hinton, 21, was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown to the California State University Board of Trustees on June 20 as a student member. Hinton, a former Associated Students president at Sonoma State, will serve until 2019.
"For the past year I had been focusing on improving student experience at SSU," says Hinton. "My job now as a leader is to represent the entire 479,000 students in the CSU system."
There are two student members on the Board of Trustees, each serving a two-year term. The student trustees become voting members in their second year. Hinton joins student trustee Jorge Reyes Salinas, who replaces Maggie White as the voting student trustee.
Though she submitted an application for the position months ago, Hinton had not heard back for several weeks and did not expect to be chosen. In the mean time, she lost her re-election bid for AS President at Sonoma State as well as the election for chair of the California State Student Association. "It looked like my leadership path was coming to an end," says Hinton. "It was really hard to come to terms with. But I had no idea it was leading to this. I was really surprised when I got the call."
Public service is a familiar concept to Hinton, who was also an after-school children’s social worker intern at the Committee on the Shelterless from 2015 to 2016. After graduating from Sonoma State, she hopes to attend law school.
She says her focus as AS president was student advocacy, something she plans to bring to the Board of Trustees. "I'm there to represent the students and be a voice for students," she says.
The California State University Board of Trustees is the 25-member board that adopts regulations and policies governing the CSU system.