Devon Rice: Utah Tech University’s first student body president

Isabella Perrello | Sun News Daily

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On March 10 at 1:30 p.m. Dixie State University politics announced Devon “Dink” Rice as Utah Tech University’s first student body president.

Rice said he will be a good leader for students as the university transitions to Utah Tech University.

Rice said: “I’ve been involved with the name change process for two years now, and have flip side-to-side multiple times so I have a good idea of what both sides want. But I want to keep diving into that and I’ve already started on that… I want to keep working with the community and students to see what they need.”

Rice said he plans to complete each of the tasks he presented in his platform. Rice said most tasks could take his entire term.

“It’s definitely going to take all year, a couple of them [the platform tasks] will be part way done by the time my time as president is over,” Rice said.

Rice said the policy changes are going to take the longest to accomplish in his term.

Rice said: “A lot goes into all of these things. For example, the policy changes are going to take a long time because policy meetings only happen a couple times a year. Yeah, we can do all of the bookwork and get policies changed… but policies can’t officially be changed until they are proposed in those policy meetings.”

Rice plans to prioritize mental health amongst students on campus.

“In my opinion, mental health needs to be tackled from the frontend, not the backend and the way we do that is by providing a social life for every student on campus,” Rice said. “We’ve got everything students need for every type of demographic, the thing is it can be promoted a lot better so that more students know about it.”

Rice is a firm believer if students have an active social life they will overall have better mental health and be more academically successful.

“A lot of students don’t go out of their way to find their place… they aren’t taking the first step, so we need to do that for them,” Rice said.

Rice said students should attend the events on campus as a way to meet new people and experience new things.

“This year I’ve made it an extra point to go to events that I wouldn’t standardly go to, events that aren’t necessarily in my demographic,” Rice said. “Specifically culture events, it’s been a fun experience getting to go to those events and get a feel for these other cultures and what they put on.”

When asked about Rice’s competitors in the 2022-2023 student body elections he said: “Huge props to all of them, as we all saw a lot of people that ran weren’t people that we expected to run; but they did it and they went all out… It was really impressive and the biggest thing overall with all of the competitors was that everybody was civil. I feel like that is not super common in elections so I am grateful for that and that everyone was really respectful. Today we got the news and within minutes Jose had already texted me congratulating me. Just great culture around the whole election this season.”

Rice hopes to have an impact on students by getting them connected with the resources they need and finding out the things they like to do so he can open the doors to a new opportunity.

Rice said: “I want to try to be that person as much as I can this next year. I want to be the person to connect all of the students to their home… For whatever student it is, I just want to help open those doors and I think that is one way I will definitely be able to impact students on campus and not just campus in general.”