She calls herself a natural-born leader. The desire to further hone her leadership skills is just one of the many reasons Morgan State senior business administration major Mariyah Bryant jumped at the chance to represent the State of Maryland and the university as the student commissioner for the Maryland Higher Education Commission, or MHEC. After submitting an application, she was selected and appointed to the position by Gov. Larry Hogan.
When asked about her initial reaction to learning about the appointment, Bryant simply said, “I’m ready to work!”
The Graves Honors student is the sole student commissioner and will serve as a liaison between the Commission and its Student Advisory Council (SAC). Founded in 1988, MHEC is the state board responsible for establishing statewide policies for public and private colleges and universities. The Commission is also tasked with governing the start-up and continuation of the state’s higher education institutions, implementing new academic programs and providing financial aid for Maryland students.
The SAC comprises students from Maryland colleges and universities who act as the voice of the students at their institutions. Among the institutions represented, besides Morgan, are Johns Hopkins University, the University of Baltimore and Salisbury University. Bryant says she hopes to add more diversity to the council.
“During my tenure, I plan to diversify the representation on the Student Advisory Council to include more HBCU students, so that our voices can be heard more clearly,” said Bryant.
Bryant says she also wants to see Maryland’s college students give back through statewide community service projects, including a mentoring program. The Prince George’s County native says she knows serving as student commissioner will be a big task, but she says being a Morgan State student has prepared her.
“My experience at Morgan has been nothing short of great…. Morgan has afforded me many opportunities and access to caring professors, who have sharpened my outlook on life,” said Bryant, who is a first-generation college student.
Bryant has a 3.87 GPA and plans to graduate summa cum laude in May of 2016. She has already been offered a job after graduation in the Finance Analyst Development Program at JPMorgan Chase & Co.
“Beyond my transition to a finance analyst position at JPMorgan Chase, I plan to obtain my M.B.A. in finance, become a financial manager and have a reputable real estate business. I am known for wearing many hats, so I am excited to see where life will take me,” said Bryant.
Bryant’s term as student commissioner will run through July 2016.