Since Talar Alexanian was a teenager growing up in La Crescenta, she has been committed to making a difference in her community. So, when she enrolled at California State University, Northridge in 2010, it was natural for her to get involved in service activities on and off-campus.
Today, Alexanian is serving more than 400,000 students at 23 CSU campuses as the first CSUN student appointed to the California State University Board of Trustees.
“For me, involvement in my community has always been an important part of my life,” said the 20-year-old. “This appointment is like an extension of what I have always done in my community. I want to serve the students and make sure their voices and concerns are represented.”
Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Alexanian to the post in July. The appointment is a two-year term. She will serve as the non-voting student trustee in her first year and assume the voting student trustee position in her second year.
Her goals are to improve access and communications between the CSU board of trustees and students, and make sure underrepresented groups like veterans and the LBGTQ community are represented.
In addition to serving on the CSU board of trustees, Alexanian is vice president of CSUN’s Associated Students. She has been active on campus, serving as an upper-division senator from 2012 to 2013. She has been the student representative for the CSU Admission Advisory Council since 2012 and was an events assistant at the CSUN Matador Involvement Center from 2011 to 2013.
Alexanian said she learned a lot about the CSUN community through her work with Unified We Serve, the campus’ volunteer program.
“It really allowed me to recruit students and get them involved in the campus,” said Alexanian, applauding the impact the campus’ annual food and clothing and other programs have on the surrounding community.
An intern for Los Angeles City Councilmember Paul Krekorian in 2010 and a public relations and media intern for the Armenian National Committee of America in 2010, Alexanian’s community experience goes beyond her work for CSUN.
But for now, CSUN is where her efforts are directed. “I want students to believe in themselves,” Alexanian said. “Students hold the power to make a difference.”