Smith champions student voice as newly-appointed representative

Kyra Ray

Rolla High School has many student leadership positions that are unique to the school. One position empowers the student leader to express the thoughts and concerns of students to a larger audience than just people of RHS. Junior Campbell Smith is the current student representative to the school board.
Smith saw opportunities in taking the position.
“I saw the position was open because I kept on getting emails about it, and I was like, this kind of seems cool because I get to sit on the board and share my thoughts [about] what I think is going on around the school, and bring up any concerns that anyone has,” said Smith. “I thought that was just a really cool thing to do in general, so I wanted to help out.”
This position offers advantages not usually presented to student officers of other organizations like Student Council.
“One advantage is that I do get firsthand experience with the board,” explained Smith. “Just being able to talk to them is really helpful in knowing what’s going on around the school. A disadvantage, though, is that it is kind of nerve-wracking because I’m in front of all those people, and they’re broadcasting it.”
There is a specific set up for this position as a student representative.
“So most people have little sections. I have my own little section, but that’s mainly on events that are happening within the district. They have different specialized sections. They have a COVID specific section now. They have finances specific [section]. They have school improvement specific sections,” said Smith. “I would basically just bring up anything that I see is going on and anything that needs to be addressed. If I have a concern about something, I can bring it up.”
Campbell believes that there is a need for more emphasis on student leadership.
“I think there does genuinely need to be more of an emphasis on student body clubs like StuCo,” said Smith. “I think maybe an emphasis on more scholarship based merits would be a good motivation for students because college is expensive, and having a way to pay for that is really nice. That would be a good motivator, and also the student culture could be more focused on [student representation]. It’s really isolated, unless you’re involved in it.”
Having additional representatives is a thought to entertain.
“It would be interesting to have a different age range, like having a freshman and a senior [as representatives]. Seeing how a freshman would look at the school and what they want in the school, and then seeing how a senior, who’s experienced the actual experience of high school, would make changes to the school,” said Smith.