Student Programming Board presents its new, ambitious leader

May 04, 2023

Student Zack Iwatsuki

Zack Iwatsuki '24, a health science major and double minor in biomedical sciences and sociology, is ambitiously planning for the year ahead as Student Programming Board's new president-elect.

In addition to his studies at Quinnipiac, Iwatsuki is a senior student ambassador and day visit representative for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, crew chief for QUEMS, and a resident assistant for the Office of Residential Life.

From late-night chair to mainstage chair to travel chair, Zack now serves as the president of Quinnipiac's Student Programming Board (SPB).

Iwatsuki is grateful for the opportunity to be involved in a variety of clubs and organizations, he said, especially as a first-year during the pandemic.

"I came to Quinnipiac during the peak of COVID-19 and at first it was hard to meet new people," he said. "There were obvious restrictions and getting to know people was hard. Getting involved on campus helped me meet new people from different backgrounds and find some of my closest friends today."

Iwatsuki feels these types of involvement experiences are the key to success post-graduation as well, he said.

“Getting experience in many different areas of life, meeting new people and creating connections all around and being involved in different offices around campus has allowed me to build both personal and professional relationships with a diverse group of my peers and adults in varying settings,” he said. 

Even as a first-year, Iwatsuki took notice of the Student Programming Board's unyielding nature during the pandemic.

"I saw that the organization was holding events even with COVID-19 at its peak and I found the events to be a fun way to escape my academics," he said. "I started to help at events after attending a few and seeing how close the executive board was and how much fun they were having. After the fall semester, two spots opened up on the executive board for the spring and I figured I would apply and see if I got one of the spots. Sure enough, I ended up getting a spot and I have been on the executive board ever since."

Iwatsuki never imagined that he would be the president of the Student Programming Board until this year. 

"I did most of my work in the shadows but I wanted to start becoming more of a leader in my involvement," he said. "I wanted to leave my mark and legacy somewhere on campus."

Iwatsuki's favorite event during his time on the executive board was Wake the Giant 2022, he said. As someone who thrives in chaos, this event, where the headliner canceled eight hours prior to the show's start, was practically made for his time as mainstage chair.

"I loved working with my team of directors and volunteers to completely change the event and still pull it off," Iwatsuki said. "It was really nice to see an event of such a high caliber be complete and over with. I owe a lot to my directors and my team because, without them, the event would have flopped. Being part of such a great team and seeing everyone work with and bounce ideas off of each other was very heartwarming."

For students thinking about joining the organization, Iwatsuki emphasizes the importance of event planning and how much creativity it allows for.

"This has been one of the greatest decisions of my college career," he said. "Everyone should get experience on the other side of event planning because you have the freedom to create the events that you want to see. There are also professional benefits as it is a great way to build upon life skills needed post-graduation and also meet many mentors and people that can help you grow. I have met some of the best people through this organization and have learned so much about myself and my strengths and weaknesses."

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