College News

New student regent and representatives forge emerging relationship

Ryan Ring is a junior at UW-Eau Claire studying finance and political science. 

Ryan Ring has been involved in student government ever since seventh grade, and when he arrived at UW-Eau Claire in 2015 he settled into committees on the student government association before working his way to a student senate position.

But now, Ring has a more prestigious seat — not through student government, but appointed by the governor. Succeeding former UW-Whitewater student James Langnes III, the first-generation college student will be confirmed next month by the state Senate as the next student regent.

The Board of Regents — the governing body for the UW System — has 18 regents, 16 appointed by the governor. Two of those are students.

Ring first became interested the position when the board visited his campus last fall — in fact, Ring said UW System President Ray Cross gave him advice on how to apply for the position and pointed him to the application.

“It was honestly just like any other job I’ve applied for,” Ring said. A week after he received a call from the governor's office, they issued a press release announcing his appointment and his schedule quickly filled with meetings across the system.

In the months following, Ring has already begun developing a relationship with the UW System Student Representatives and their president, UW-Stevens Point student John Peralta.

According to Peralta, UWSSR’s relationship with the Board of Regents is mostly “handshakes and verbal agreements” but he hopes to set a precedent for the body to have more influence in the system. This includes pursuing a relationship with the student regent.

Last year, UWSSR endorsed a list of students to fill the position and presented it to the governor's office — Ring’s name was not among them. Peralta said while the group was disappointed they plan to put forward a list of names again before the next appointment process.

Ring believes his position should continue to be appointed by the governor but still serve as a student voice to help regents “keep an ear to the ground.”

“It's more of bringing the experiences of those students to the board,” Ring said. “And that's what I intend to do."

Comments powered by Disqus

Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Cardinal.