SU student named to State Education board

Jul. 30—The Daily Item

A Susquehanna University student who is a Selinsgrove High graduate is one of the newest members of the Pennsylvania State Board of Education.

On Friday, the Department of Education announced that soon-to-be SU junior Natalie Imhoof will serve as the board's Junior Postsecondary Student member. She is joined on the board by Claire Chi, a junior at State College Area High School.

"Student voices are critically important as we work to develop policies and best practices in schools across the commonwealth, and we welcome the unique perspectives that Natalie and Claire will bring to the State Board of Education," said Acting Secretary of Education Eric Hagarty. "Through their participation in a number of important conversations, these two bright young leaders will help shape the vision of education for decades to come."

Imhoof is a biology and management major at Susquehanna University and serves as a student ambassador at the university and is a summer intern at the Mid-Atlantic Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development. Imhoof also serves as a Vertical Garden Project leader of Partners for a Healthy Community, where she creates and coordinates installation of indoor gardens at senior living facilities and researched the effects of gardening on social isolation and loneliness, a study which she will provide to the National Gardening Association.

She is also the treasurer of serves as the American Sign Language (ASL) Club Treasurer.

"The board values the input and perspectives that our student members provide on issues that are important to Pennsylvania's students," said Chair of the Board Karen Farmer White. "By including student leaders on the Board, we seek to encourage civic participation among Pennsylvania's youth and to empower student voices in education policymaking."

The State Board changed its bylaws in May 2008 to incorporate student representation in a non-voting capacity on the Council of Basic Education and the Council of Higher Education. Student members must attend and participate in board meetings, advise, and consult with the board, and adhere to board regulations. They will also establish an ongoing relationship with other students throughout the commonwealth to more effectively represent students in Pennsylvania's educational policymaking. The State Board of Education's members — and four student representatives — convene every other month throughout the year to discuss and vote on education policies and procedures.