Posted on by Steven Wein

USU Welcomes New Board of Directors Chair and Vice Chair for Spring 2024 

Jasmin Zesati
USU Board of Directors Chair Jasmin Zesati

The University Student Union (USU) recently elected a new Board of Directors (BOD) chair and vice chair for the spring 2024 semester. Chair Jasmin Zesati and Vice Chair Daniel Lopez have stepped enthusiastically into their roles this month, both looking forward to serving the campus community by achieving their goals.

Zesati said she wants to boost the board’s visibility this semester.

“We want to try our best to get the name of the Board of Directors out there. We really want students to feel like they have that support from students on the board,” said Zesati. “I feel like there is just so much disconnect, and we want to make it a point that when you think of the USU, you think Board of Directors.”

Lopez echoed a similar sentiment, hoping to see more interaction between students and board members.

“I want to help increase our social media efforts,” Lopez said. “Just really making sure we’re able to engage with the student employees and the overall campus community in general to let them know why we are here.”

Daniel Lopez
USU Board of Directors Vice Chair Daniel Lopez

Of the approved board goals for 2023-2024 that include establishing meaningful connections as a team, gaining essential leadership and career readiness skills, continued involvement within the University Student Union, and allocating financial resources to support the “basic needs” of CSUN students, Lopez and Zesati said student outreach is key to ensuring that students become aware of all of the services the USU offers at no extra cost.

“This is really important to us because we work for the students and we want them to make the most out of their college experience here at CSUN,” Zesati said.

Before joining the board, Zesati said she felt alienated on campus, despite living in one of the dorms nearby. The connection between her and the California State University, Northridge campus grew significantly after finding her place at the student union.

“It really does just feel like a family, and that’s crazy because I hadn’t felt that in college. You go into college hoping that you’ll have that, but then I finally really found it when I was here,” said Zesati. “That’s what I want to extend out to students, because I know how it feels like being away from home.”

Many students share the same feelings about the USU and its way of drawing people in, including Vice Chair Lopez.

“The USU is kind of like my home on campus. It’s a place that offers a sense of belonging and support for students,” said Lopez. “I feel like it’s the heart of campus.”

Both Zesati and Lopez were a part of the USU BOD before reaching their current positions and were inspired by their previous work to take on new responsibilities.

Lopez was a member of the USU’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee for about two years before advancing to chair of the Facilities and Operations Committee. These experiences played a big role in encouraging him to run for BOD vice chair last semester.

“I’ve been working closely with Chair Zesati and making sure that we can help reach those goals that we have for the BOD and overall increasing our impact on students and serving the campus community. That’s why I chose to run for vice chair.”

Zesati also began her journey as a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee. The committee’s meaningful work to create the USU’s land acknowledgment statement drove her to move up the ranks until she became vice chair in fall 2023.

“I loved being vice chair with previous Chair Daniel Moreno, and I learned a lot, I found my support,” Zesati said. “I just fell in love with the USU.”

Zesati encourages other students to take advantage of new opportunities that present themselves, even if they are not yet fully confident.

“Why not just try? I feel like you’re more regretful if you don’t try.”

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