SUNY’s top student representative honored by Phillips

Elmont native and SUNY Cortland graduate Michael Braun was sworn in as the newly elected SUNY Student Assembly president earlier today in Albany with state Sen. Elaine Phillips. (Photo courtesy of the office of state Sen. Elaine Phillips)

Elmont native and SUNY Cortland graduate Michael Braun was sworn in as the newly elected SUNY Student Assembly president earlier today in Albany.

During his visit to the State Capital, state Sen. Elaine Phillips presented Braun with an official New York State resolution in recognition of his achievements.

“Michael is the embodiment of what makes our SUNY system so exemplary. His outstanding service to his community coupled with his initiative and drive to propel our State’s public college system forward makes him a perfect fit to take on the responsibilities he will face as President. I know the Elmont community is proud to call Michael one of their own and we wish him nothing but the best of luck with his new duties,” Phillips said.

Braun, who graduated from SUNY Cortland in 2017, was elected in April by his peers across the SUNY system to serve as President of the SUNY SA. The new role places Braun as the top student government representative for the largest public university system in the country, with over 600,000 students that attend one of the 64 campuses throughout the state.

“It’s an amazing feeling to know that the students across this system trust in me to serve as their next president,” Braun said. “We’re the next generation of leaders in New York State. For my fellow students to listen to me and believe in my vision, that’s a great feeling. It’s something that motivates me every day.”

In addition to his role as president where he will be a crucial voice on student topics such as college accessibility, affordability and overall student life, Braun will also be a voting member of the 18-person SUNY Board of Trustees, a Trustee of the NYS Higher Education Services Corporation, and a member of the Chancellor’s Cabinet.

The passion and interest in public service began for Braun at a very young age when he volunteered as a community outreach coordinator in his hometown of Elmont. That passion remained with him while attending Elmont Memorial High School where he was involved with a number of sports and extracurricular activities, including class president.

“My time at Elmont Memorial HS was incredibly invaluable and provided me with the leadership skills that helped me get where I am today. The supportive community that I had and continue to have back home is what motivates me to keep progressing forward. I am incredibly grateful to my Elmont family and would not be anywhere close to where I am today without them,” Braun said.

This fall, Braun will be entering his second year as a graduate student at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy at the University at Albany. He is pursuing his Master’s in Public Administration with a concentration in Politics, Policy, and Institutions.

Braun officially assumes office and responsibilities as president on Friday, June 1.

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