Though he acknowledged numerous perks that come with winning Man of the Year, Matt Conklin was just happy to share the moment with his parents.
On Friday night, the SGA President was announced winner of the competition at a banquet. Conklin credited his progressive leadership and constant communication with the student body as some of the elements that helped him get the award.
“I think I won because I represented what the award stands for,” he said. “I feel like just being involved in various student organizations that serve the University. I’ve always prioritized my academics. I feel like I’ve been able to become involved and develop as a leader at Wichita State.”
“You feel as if your all of your hard work is being acknowledged and recognized with this very high award,” he said. “It’s kind of like the epitome of going to college, getting good greats, being a leader, so it’s something you should strive for.”
Despite his qualifications, Conklin believes his opponents were equally deserving of the honor and consequently praised them.
“It was very competitive this year,” he said. “I knew all the finalists, I’d say I’m friends with all of them, we all know each other. I was surprised that I won, to be honest. I think any of the finalists could have won, as well.”
The Man of the Year’s road to success started as he applied to the position of senator within SGA as a freshman. Three years later, the school chose him to lead the organization. He also serves as the Phi Delta Theta fraternity’s President since January.
Conklin also congratulated Whitney Wilson, who became his female counterpart as she earned the Woman of the Year accolade, yet she wasn’t available for comment.
“She’s an involved, very astute young lady,” he said. “She’s definitely worthy of the award.”