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The Mass Media

2-26-24 PDF
February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

Kush Patel Elected as Board of Higher Education Member

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Kush Patel

Kush Patel, a freshman at the University of Massachusetts Boston, was recently elected as the student representative for the Board of Higher Education for Massachusetts. This position is for the 2018–2019 academic year and entitles the selectee to a full and equal voting opportunity on the Board. “This is a tremendous opportunity to weigh in on issues, such as funding priorities for the public higher education system and quality of academic program,” states mass.edu. Patel will have the opportunity to have a full vote on issues that come about in higher education of Massachusetts and will be representing the University of Massachusetts as a whole.
The elected student will also have the chance to learn about the initiatives of the colleges and universities, as well as the Department of Higher Education “to address students’ college readiness, college-going and college success rates, and readiness to enter the workforce upon college completion.” The Board of Higher Education will meet at least six times per year, usually on campuses within the public higher education system. The student member would be assigned to one of the three standing committees of the Board, which usually meets in Boston the week prior to any scheduled Board meeting. The elected student must be enrolled at one of the University of Massachusetts schools at the time of their service (2018-2019). “Each year, the Student Member is selected, on a rotating basis, from among the three segments of the public higher education system—either the community colleges, the state universities, or UMass,” explains the Massachusetts Education website. Right now, a state university student is serving for the 2017–2018 year, so it will next be UMass’ turn.
Patel first found out about the board’s Student Member position through our Undergraduate Student Government Speaker Lucas Henrique. Patel has been a member of the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) for his first year at UMass Boston. He researched further into what the student advisory council for the Board of Higher Education did before running for the position, and was helped immensely by our Student Trustee, Gray Milkowski. “Gray Milkowski was available to talk with me and help me prepare him for this position,” says Patel. He also had to be interviewed by the current members of the student advisory council who are students from various state universities and community colleges. These students nominated Patel to serve as the student member on the Board of Higher Education and it is now left to the Governor to make the appointment.
Patel will continue his involvement on campus as a political science major. He comes from the Advanced Math and Science Academy charter school (AMSA) and plans to graduate 2021. Currently he is still involved in USG and was recently elected as the Student Events and Organization Committee (SEOC) Chair for next year.