BY NICHOLAS SICKELS
What is your major? – I’m an LPS and Graphic Design double major
Where are you from? – Rochester, Minnesota
Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school? – Yeah, I was involved in student government in high school. Did a lot of planning of activities, obviously kind of the standard thing. I’m a musician, and I play in a band back home and in vocal shows, and I was very involved in helping to plan the music festival called Rochester. So just kind of recruiting other acts from the Twin Cities to come down and making sure advertising was suitable and was in the place it needed to be, working with local acts, things like that, making sure all the logistics were figured out.
What is your platform? – I’m an advocate for inclusivity and I’m fostering social and academic success and promoting mental health, so basically just trying to create a community where people feel supported and included in all aspects of the campus, whether that be making sure clubs are including everybody that they can and making sure that they are understanding each other’s ideas and trying to make sure that students know they have a support system here on campus.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? – I’m not really sure. I’ve always thought about wanting to be a criminal defense attorney or a freelance graphic designer for different companies.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? – Can I pick two things? Okay, I would have free feminine hygiene products in all the bathrooms, just to make sure, because it’s a pretty big cost for students who need those products, and personally, it weighs me down quite a bit, having to buy that stuff. We have free condoms so why don’t we have free necessities? I would personally, and I know a lot of first-years have this issue, I would fix the dryers in the residence halls.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? – I just want to say that in high school I was personally a pretty shy kid and I didn’t really… I had a solid group of three or four friends that I hung out with all the time and I wasn’t able to get myself out there that much. But here I’ve been able to find people already and put myself out there and be able to get a support system really really quickly and join organizations that I’m already really passionate about and I think just making sure that Drake students know that if they aren’t really sure about what they want to do or if they’re kind of shy that they have people here who want to help them and I want to make sure that they know that and that I’m here for them.
What is your major? My major is Actuarial Sciences.
Where are you from? – Lincoln, Nebraska
Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school? – I’ve been a part of various student organizations throughout high school including student council my senior year. I was a historian in speech my junior year. I try to be a leader throughout the rest of my life. I’ve been in Boy Scouts, and I received the Eagle Scout, and I was also the senior patrol leader at one point. And even when I don’t have an officer position, I try to lead by example and I hope that my position in the club can lead everybody to success and not just myself.
What’s your platform? – Since I just got to Drake it’s hard for me to know what every single person’s problem is, but I know that if I listen to them and put myself in a position where I’m approachable and easy to communicate with I’ll be able to hear their problems and then I’ll be able to figure out how to address it. If I continue with Student Senate I’ll be more aware of what Drake needs and what our student body wants, but for now all I can do is listen to my constituents.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? – Actuary. I want to be a fellow by the time I’m 30, and I plan to pass three at least exams during my time at Drake.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? – I’d say 24 hours availability for the Olmsted Underground. It seems like 11:00 PM is a little bit too early for it to close. Some people like to take a break from homework and studying and go for a jog and 11:00 PM is way earlier than most people go to sleep in college, I think.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? – I just like to be approachable and able for my peers to voice their concerns. Because without their concerns, I don’t know what to fix.
What is your major? Music/Business
Where are you from? LeClaire, Iowa
Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school? – I have not. I mean, you might include the opera as a student group, which I’m in right now, but I don’t know if you would. But, I ran for my student senate in high school, and unfortunately, I lost, but it was a blessing in disguise. At my job I was placed in charge quite a bit. I was a cashier at Hy-Vee for a time but I always kind of fulfilled that role as the person people would go to for help. And I babysit my little cousins all the time. There are teeny-tiny little leadership roles. Smaller experiences that made me realize that there’s a common strain and that I could fulfill something a little more leadership oriented. I’m the loudest voice in the room, usually.
What is your platform? – My campaign platform is called “It’s all in the details”. More, when candidates tend to look at broader subjects, especially with this kind of campaign, they don’t know what they’re doing yet in that they promise things which they can’t quite promise. I think that if we can solve tiny things that I want to listen to people and ask if they need any help on. Small, achievable goals that increase quality of life and allow our time here to be a little bit easier […] I want people to realize that it’s not so much an ornamental kind of thing as it might have been in high school. We’d deal with real money. You can only really understand the role once you’re actually in it. And I want to know my total limits and then revisit the subject of what can I do. It’s just that I realize that we have been here for four weeks. We barely know each other. While it may be very close proximity relationships that we’re cultivating it’s still very very fresh to realize that small steps sometimes are bigger than leaps that might make us fall flat on our face. Saying no sometimes is better than saying yes too many times.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? – I don’t know specifically, actually. I’d like to go into politics, maybe, one day. I mean, that’s tentative.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? – Give us all personal bathrooms. No, that’s a very complex question … I’d diversify the campus a bit more. Include people and promote diversity on campus.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? I do not necessarily cater to the more liberal side of views. I am a liberal Democrat and I feel like we’re very fed up with how things are in our country right now. We almost kind of want to channel that into how we make our decisions on campus, which is incredibly… that’s very good. But, I know that I don’t always look like I represent or we want somebody that reflects what we… I want to be the voice that helps people realize that they are much more than just one person in a very large university but that they are the voice that is listened to and that they are the voice that will run the narrative as soon as they graduate this school. We help cultivate it and refine it and give it an intelligent thought and we can shape things more than just this little pocket dimension that we live in. I find that universities tend to be way more progressive and then you get into the real world and everything tends to slow down. Perhaps we can keep that momentum once we get out if we just build ourselves a little bit better here. And I don’t know if I can do that effectively. I think I can, but I don’t like to deal in absolutes. But, I know I can at the very least set an example of confidence and intelligence, perhaps a little bit of grace.
What is your major? I’m an Elementary Education Major with a Sociology minor.
Where are you from? I’m from Frankfurt, Illinois, but I lived in Kansas City, Kansas and Detroit, Michigan.
Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school? Yes, so at my high school I founded and was the president of Black Student Union. I was on the board for Gay Strait Alliance and Muslim Alliance. I was on Be the Change, which was sort of like student senate where you all came together and put ideas together on how to allocate money for different organizations and how to get everyone included and excited about their school, and Peer Mentors, which was where you got a Freshman mentor to watch after, and I was in charge of all the freshman mentors. And also Student Ambassadors, which was a program that helped students when they transferred in, so I was on the board for that too.
What is your platform? So, I’m running on equity, inclusion, and community. I really want to focus on those three things this upcoming year. If I were to be the First Year Senator, that would be my most important things that I emphasize. So, I have a couple of ideas that I’m super excited about that I would hope I’d be able to get going that would accelerate those three things. One idea that I had would be to open something in Olmsted where people, anyone, so any person, organization, or group could come and basically share their ideas with everyone at Drake. So, if you like to do anime, one Thursday you could come down and basically do anime. Anyone would be able to come join you and you could either teach it or do a club meeting. It’d be a way for people at Drake to dip their toes in in different organizations and meet different people who are interested in similar things. It’s different [from existing clubs] because this would be sort of … it would be called a “taste of Drake”. So, anyone could do it and it would only be once. A sample. It’d be a way for students to be like: “oh, I don’t know if I want to join Anime Club”, and any organization could sponsor it. They could sponsor it and then someone who was like “oh, I don’t know, I was kinda iffy about it”, they could try out a meeting and go to join more or hang out with the people they met at the meeting.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? Yes, so with my Elementary Education major I want to do education reform. So, when you look at the education system, that is the first place kids see capitalism which, unfortunately, is detrimental to some students. When you look at the way money influences the way how well of an education someone can get, it’s actually extremely sad. Some kids are, when you look at schools that are more affluent, their college readiness will be in the nineties. And then you look at schools who are in poverty and the college readiness will be at two. But these kids are expected to be at the same level in college. That’s something I’m extremely passionate about and constantly working towards so student senate wouldn’t just be a club or an organization or something that I would do. This is a lifestyle and it’s something that I want to do for the rest of my life.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? I’m really having a good time. One thing I would change is this rain, but I don’t think I can do that. I really have been having a good time. I don’t think there are any major changes I would make to Drake right now.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? I want to be a microphone for you guys. I want to work together, and we can form a partnership. I want to be more amplifying you guys’ thoughts, ideas, concerns, and any outrage or questions, anything that you have, I want to be able to voice that to student senate. So, I don’t want to just be about me and my ideas and my thoughts. I really want to focus on what we want to do as a first year group of peers.
What is your major? I am majoring in Pharmacy, and I hope to get my MBA as well.
Where are you from? Rochester, Minnesota.
Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school? Well, I led the weight lifting team at my high school. It was only like 3 people from JM. And it was through the three high schools in our town but I was one of the main people in getting that program started.
What is your platform? Well, I want to foster and stay along the Drake equity and inclusion which they’ve already got going on which is good. But I’m supposed to be representing first years as a whole, so I would need to know what they need, what platforms will help the most people And right now I think that preventing sexual assault and define the line/respect the line, that type of thing, is something that we’ve started and still needs a lot of work. And I think I could do some great things to get us to where we want to go.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? – I hope to be a pharmacist. My goals are to work as a pharmacist after I graduate, and I want to start investing using my MBA so that I can retire when I’m 50, 60 years old so I don’t have to be working as a pharmacist for a super long time.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? I would make it so that every person that was working here knew exactly what I meant when I asked them a question. For example, I was struggling to find the meeting place for the first year senate candidate – it was in this building [Olmsted] but I didn’t know where. There were a bunch of people downstairs, so I didn’t think it was down there. I asked someone at a desk and there was only one person here. I don’t blame her for not knowing because, I mean, how can they? But it would make getting around a little bit easier, you know, if everyone knew exactly where everything was.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? Follow your gut. Whatever you feel is the right choice, go with it. Because, that’s your chance. Whoever you vote for, even if it’s not me, you’re making your voice heard and that’s what this is all about.
What is your major? I’m majoring in Elementary Education.
Where are you from? Gurnee, Illinois
*Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school?* Yes, I did have leadership roles in high school. I was the secretary of my school’s drama club and the recording secretary of my 4-H club for 4 years and the vice president for the last year. I also started my own organization in my community called Keep Gurnee Clean, which is an anti-litter campaign aimed at keeping the four main Gurnee trails litter free.
What is your platform? I’m running to be more inclusive on our campus. I know a lot of commuters have expressed that they don’t feel like they’re very included or being able to build relationships with other people. So, I think by having a commuter lounge where people can go and just hang out, sort of like the dorm common areas but so everyone is able to be included. It would be a great idea to be more inclusive of everyone on campus. I’m currently in the Midterm Elections FYS and about half of my FYS is commuters. And that’s a common issue they’ve expressed to me and by taking ideas from first year students I feel I’m able to represent the first years and address some concerns they’ve expressed early on in the semester.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? Being in elementary education, I hope to be a first-year teacher with the ESL endorsement and I think just working will little kids, in general, is what I would like to do so being a first-grade teacher is my ideal job right now.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? I would add a fun building to campus, so that way people would be able to hang out and not be in a pressure situation where they have to sit down at tables and study. By having a fun, common space where people can go, hang out, and talk, it would allow people to meet each other and meet new people they haven’t met before.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? I would encourage voters to vote for someone who they believe is personal and would represent their views. I think being available around campus and by being someone who is able to listen to the voters […] the voters should be able to vote for someone who they feel comfortable talking to and feel comfortable expressing their concerns to so they can be sure to make their voice heard.
What is your major? My major is Law, Politics, and Society.
Where are you from? I’m from Riverside, California, but I was raised in a lot of Mexico and Southern California.
*Do you have any prior involvement in student groups and leadership roles in high school?* I created and led a safe-space group on campus, ran the peer-to-peer counseling center with my advisor, was President of the class of 2018 my junior year, I was a co-choreographer for an Anti-Bullying Dance Team, and was the leader of the winning districts and regionals Engineering Design Challenge of Southern California.
What is your platform? My campaign platform is to feel included, feel aware, and feel informed, and by that, I mean for all these resources and all these aspects of what the campus entitles and for the diversity coexistent and interactive with all the student body, and for it to not just exist on campus.
Do you know what your career goals are right now? I want to go to Law School, either here at Drake or at Stanford. I want to study family and immigration law to work at the border for all the families being separated and for the children to have a representative because there aren’t very many of them right now.
If you had a magic wand of unlimited power and you could change anything at Drake, what would it be? Disappearing the stigma of people of color, or the stereotypes of people of color. Being a person of color in a predominantly white institution is one of the most difficult things I’ve had to endure, being from Southern California. We have to go through a lot of different scenarios and situations every day. Sometimes they’re just microaggressions and people don’t understand that they’re microaggressions. It becomes really, really tough for your emotional, mental, and sometimes physical health. So, just erasing that all as an entity is something I would want to do.
What would be your final pitch to the voters? You should vote for me because I come from a place that is very diverse, and I’ve understood my cultural beliefs very well. I’ve had a lot of training and practice to include that in my everyday life. My goal is to – and I’ve already started to do it – to further involve myself in the inclusivity and equity programs on campus.
*During the interviews with Anthony Adame and Emily Kellogg, the author inadvertently omitted this question. Please note that the answers are written statements taken later the same night after the author discovered his mistake*
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