What is the first thing you will do as student body president?
I will organize ways to build on, in my opinion, the deteriorating sense of spirit at Gilman. During my Junior year, I saw a fraction of the student body regularly attending sports games compared to years past. I intend to create more incentives if that is what is necessary to allow larger amounts of students to come cheer on their classmates and friends out on the fields, courts, rink, etc. Simultaneously, I will work to make sure that underclassmen feel comfortable in the Upper School, as the transition can be confusing, and at times frightening. Simply having conversations with upperclassmen can help build the confidence necessary to enjoy and succeed at Gilman.
What do you love most about Gilman?
Easily the energy that I witnessed Freshman year, and that I hope to bring back for next year.
Why should the student body vote for you?
As I said, I honestly enjoy working in all aspects of Gilman's Extra-Curriculars and Events. From being a member of the Student Council for two years, and an active participant for three, I have the proper framework and experience to lead the school in the right direction. Working as a member of the BBQ Club for two years and leading it this year has given me the connections within the school administration to make things happen. Aside from experience, I consider myself to a kind, and easy to talk to individual. I have done my best to get to know the younger students through Peer-Education and less formal instances. School Spirit is one of the aspects to Gilman life that I want to focus on, as it plays into a large part of our daily lives. Freshman year, I witnessed large amounts of students from all grades come on to support their friends and peers during sports. This year, I did not see that, and I do not put that completely to the fault of the students. Half of the school is not able to drive, and not all sporting events are at Gilman. I did my best to be a chauffeur of underclassmen to away games/matches, but a real system needs to be put in place to ensure that each game has a proper turnout.
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What makes you different from the other candidates?
First off, most of the candidates have superior athletic abilities compared to me. I had my time as an athlete, but have decided to give it up. Why am I admitting this? Because it allows me to actually have time to be the Student Body President. Piper Bond was a phenomenal school President, but due to his stellar athletic ability, he could rarely attend sports games and lead the all-important student sections. Electing someone that plays a single varsity sport will severely take away from their ability to perform well in both their position as President and in their athletic commitment.
Sports aside, when comparing myself to the other candidates, I see all great Gilman gentleman. What I see in myself is someone that has a genuine passion for making the school run properly. Working with admissions to help facilitate events to bring in students in order to allow them to have the same great experience that I have had so far is just one way that I give back to the school that I owe so much to. On another note, I have tried my best to get to know the students in the Upper, and Middle School. I despise the awkward hallway interaction that occurs when you are unsure whether to say hi or not so you just wind-up looking at the floor and walking right past them. Washington and Lee University has a precedent of having all students and faculty constantly acknowledging each other throughout the day to encourage the sense of community there, and I intend to bring the same here.