/The Students’ Voice

The Students’ Voice

Takayla Beckon, president of Student Association, continues to advocate for others

By Steve Yablonski

Takayla Beckon was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, and Syracuse, New York. She is currently a senior at SUNY Oswego, majoring in psychology and minoring in African American studies and health science.

Ever since a young age, she’s been motivated to help others.

“Have I always been an activist? According to my mother, Yolanda Beckon, yes, I have always been an activist,” Beckon said. “When I was younger, both of my parents were very keen on keeping me active and in dance. While attending Liverpool High School, I was constantly advocating for the students I worked with on the dance team, along with people in my classes. When students were having problems at home or mental challenges, I would do everything I could to get them the help they needed.”

“Surprisingly,” Beckon noted, she became involved with Student Association through the start of the 2021 election process.

“I was unsure of the Student Association’s role in regards to the students, until I met with former president Lizeth Ortega Ramirez,” Beckon explained. “Former president Ortega made me realize the work I was doing from my sophomore year into my junior year with many other student leaders resembled the responsibilities of Student Association.”

And now, Beckon is president of the organization.

The Student Association is the student government on campus; the voice of the students on campus.

It is not only a government organization that funds organizations, but advocates for the needs and the wants of the student body, Beckon pointed out.

The organization distributes $1.4 million, funded by the students, to various organizations, clubs, departments and off-campus services.

SUNY Oswego Student Association distributes $1.4 million, funded by the students, to various organizations, clubs, departments and off-campus services.

Student television station WTOP, Centro bus to Syracuse and SAPB programs are some large examples of where the money goes.

A lot of support

“Fellow students, alumni and faculty joined me and supported me on this journey to becoming president of SA by sharing many of their experiences and values such as: flexibility, empathy, entrepreneurship, adaptability, critical thinking, collaboration, history, resilience, love, being true to yourself, thinking bigger and last but not least, remaining true to the people you serve,” Beckon said.

“The support of the student body, my mentors, my family and my ancestors helped awaken an individual who is now the president of the Student Association to be the best she can be with the joint effort of her team for the enrichment of the Oswego community as whole,” she continued.

The alumni and faculty include: Joyce Boadu, Natasia Burgess, Fadi Gaye, Tyrone Clarke, Temitope Kayode, Ma’Qusi Modeste, Shaniah Irving’s, Esebio Omar Van Reenen, Mabel Munoz, Karla Ortiz, Alajah Brooks Dr. Kenneth Marshall, Rodman King, Tekhara Watson, Jayvana Perez, Samuel Roy Holden, members within SUNY Oswego Counseling Center and “loads of organizations, student leaders, many more dimensions of the SUNY Oswego family,” she said.

In the fall semester, the Student Association had its first successful event of the year, “Oz Got Talent.” The spearhead of this event was the chief of staff of the Student Association, Tristan Caruana.

“Chief Tristan Caruana and his team worked swiftly to bring forth many talents that are embedded in the SUNY Oswego community,” Beckon said. “In addition, Nsikak Ekong, who is now an alumnus, proposed a new student organization registration process to our senate, which would enable our students to start making new organizations.”

The president said Student Association is currently committed to working with Campus Life, the administration and the Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Transformation to bring flags back on campus, black hair care into our stores, bridge the connection between SUNY Oswego and the city of Oswego and upgrade the campus in regards to the resources for the overall wellness of the SUNY Oswego community.

According to the SA webpage: An important organization such as this needs input and work from those around it. That is where students can step in. There are various ways to get involved in this organization.

All members of Oswego’s student body are encouraged to apply for the many various positions available.

“I am currently in Spain, volunteering for a hostel that is partnered with an organization whose mission is to help people around the world,” Beckon said. “I made a commitment to the Student Association and to Study Abroad. So I created my own opportunity in response to Study Abroad being canceled for SUNY schools.”

What motivates her to do what she does?

“The past, the present and future generations to come motivates me do everything I do and always aim for more!” she said.

For more information, email the president at sa.president@oswego.edu or stop into The Point in the Campus Center at any time.

To join and stay up to date with current SA related events: lakerlife.oswego.edu/organization/SA.

Featured image: Takayla Beckon, president of Student Association, relaxes as she sits overlooking Toledo, Spain. 

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