The Office of Government and Community Relations serves as the university’s primary liaison with community organizations as well as federal, state and local government officials and entities. Its mission is to continually demonstrate the value of Winston-Salem State University as an academic, research, and economic development leader and to facilitate collaborative efforts that benefit the community and the university.
The Office of Government Relations seeks to build strong relationships with community leaders, elected officials and government agencies in order to further the mission of WSSU in the public sector.
Staff members communicate with elected officials and government agencies at the federal, state and local levels to build awareness of WSSU’s value and contributions. They also monitor legislative and regulatory developments concerning higher education. As appropriate, they provide WSSU faculty, staff and students with effective and rapid response communication regarding higher education issues directly and indirectly affecting WSSU.
In addition, the office works with University Career Services to manage internship opportunities for government entities as well as not-for-profit organizations.
WSSU continuously works to foster collaboration within the community through services and programs that address community needs and provide additional resources to the community, while also enriching the learning experiences of our students.
The Office of Community Relations serves as the gateway for this interaction. The staff advises administrators and faculty on strategies to facilitate constructive dialogue with community leaders and organizations. This office also maintains and provides information on programs at the university and acts as a liaison between community organizations and the wide array of resources available through university programs and departments.
Tips for Contacting Elected Officials
Follow these tips to communicate more effectively with your elected officials and increase the odds of getting a reply:
- Be sure to date mail. Also include your name, address, and telephone number on the letter and envelope or along with your signature on an e-mail.
- Be brief and to the point. Write one page with a short opening and two to three paragraphs on the subject.
- Be friendly. Being rude, sarcastic, or threatening accomplishes nothing.
- Be issue-focused. Discuss only one issue per communication.
- Be candid and personal. Use your own words, avoiding form letters. Be sure to include your own thoughts on the issue.
- Be certain about documentation. Include details pertinent to the issue.
- Solicit a reply. Ask, “Will you support higher education?” To ensure a reply, you might enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope or ask them to reply to your e-mail.
- THANK YOUR LOCAL LEGISLATORS! Our state Senators, Representatives and other elected public officials put extraordinary time and effort into guiding our legislative process. We are fortunate that higher education is given strong support and regard during the entire year, not just during the legislative sessions. When you see your hometown state legislators, please thank them for their past and continued support.
- Be proactive. Put a date on your calendar for an anticipated reply. You may need to write the elected official again.