Candidate Questions

Undergraduate President candidate profile

By The Poly March 19, 2023

Why do you want to be undergraduate president?

I have a proven track record of advocating for improved policies and organizing successful events as a Class President, Vice President, and now the Undergraduate President. I am dedicated to making a lasting impact on the undergraduate community, as demonstrated by my involvement in the Arch Task Force and the achieved significant changes; I want to be Undergraduate President to continue to build upon what I have already accomplished.

As the Undergraduate President, I aim to create a more inclusive and supportive community for all students by fostering stronger relationships within and between classes on campus. I also want to improve career resources by providing more workshops, networking events, internships opportunities, and mentorship for students, especially in preparation for the Arch Away Semester. I want to be Undergraduate President to ensure that students are aware of the initiatives and progress being made by the student government, and that their voices are being heard and considered in the decision-making process. But most of all, I want to improve the undergraduate experience for all by working with the Class Councils to better our community.

Describe your experience in student government.

I have been involved in student government since I was first elected Class of 2024 Vice President in the Fall 2020 elections. I was then the Class of 2024 President from March 2021-2022, and I now serve as the current Undergraduate President. As Vice President, I advocated for the Class of 2024 and influenced decisions regarding improved residential policies and increased activities and gatherings on campus. As Class President, I organized many activities and events for my class, such the Sophomore Ice Cream Social with President Jackson, our class formal, class hockey night, Fall Fest, and more. As Undergraduate President, I have served as a mentor to the class leadership, offering advice and help when issues arose. I also trained the newest Class Council and continue to aid them in organizing their own activities and events. Additionally, I oversee the Arch Task Force, which has advocated for many improvements to the Arch. Some of those have already come to fruition, such as a restructuring of the Arch Prep Course, changes to the school calendar to give Summer Arch students a longer break, research on campus as an option for students on their Away Semester, and much more.

List your campus activities, including levels of involvement, positions held, and awards received.

Outside of Student Government, I am involved in undergraduate research under Dr. Keith Fraser, one of the Computational Biology and Biochemistry professors on campus. I am also an Admissions Ambassador and I work for the Union as a Graphic Designer and Social Media Manager. I have received the National Residence Hall Honorary award for the Top 1% of residential students and the White Key Award for outstanding Freshman and Sophomore leaders on campus.

Name three short-term goals (within your term of office) and three long-term goals (beyond your term of office) that you have for the Undergraduate Council.

Short term goals:

1) Collaborate with the Arch Task Force and the administration to advocate for continued improvements to the Arch program, such as providing more diverse internship opportunities, addressing concerns with the Arch prep course through restructuring the preparation process and providing more support earlier on, and exploring alternative options for students on their Away Semester.

2) Increase collaboration between the class councils and promote more frequent events to strengthen connections between classes and foster a more unified undergraduate community.

3) Develop and implement a comprehensive communication strategy to ensure clear and consistent communication from student government about our work and initiatives, including regular updates on progress made and upcoming events.

Long term goals:

1) Establish a centralized Arch Task Force website with broader career and preparation resources for the Arch.

2) Expand class council training and support programs to provide more detailed training on event planning, leadership development, and effective communication to equip class council members with the skills and knowledge needed to plan successful events and activities.

3) Work with the administration to establish a mentorship program between alumni and current students to provide students with guidance and support as they navigate their career paths and transition into the workforce.

In your own words, what do you feel are the roles of the undergraduate president, the undergraduate council, and the class councils?

Each Class Council's primary responsibility is to build a strong sense of community among its members through events, activities, and symbols like class logos, quotes, trees, and rings. The Undergraduate President plays a crucial role in unifying all the classes and providing guidance to each Class Council and its leaders. The Undergraduate President should facilitate communication among the classes, offer support, and help generate ideas. In addition, the Undergraduate President oversees the Undergraduate Council, collaborating with other student leaders to advocate for the undergraduate student body. The Undergraduate Council's primary function is to foster community between undergraduates through events and activities, approve Class Council budgets, and coordinate activities. But most importantly, it serves as a communication channel between the Class Councils and their respective classes. It is a way for the Class Councils to share their ideas with one another and offer advice and support to the other class leaders.

What do you think are the incumbent Undergraduate President’s strengths and weaknesses? What would you do to improve upon them if you were elected?

I believe some of my strengths as Undergraduate President include facing issues head-on and advocating for the undergraduate student body based solely on survey responses from my peers. I have also served as a helpful mentor to the class councils and have provided advice and aid to those in need of guidance.

As the current Undergraduate President, I think it is imperative to be able to recognize and improve upon my weaknesses. One of those weaknesses is outward communication about the on-goings of the Undergraduate Council. I have also struggled at times to motivate Class Council members who lack the initiative to organize and plan class events and activities.

If I were elected, I would aim to improve communication by providing regular updates on the work of the Undergraduate Council and creating a more engaging platform for students to express their thoughts and ideas. I would also work to inspire and motivate students by emphasizing the importance of building a strong sense of community and providing opportunities for personal and professional growth. Lastly, I would continue to support the Class Councils and provide guidance and resources to help them achieve their goals.