I’m excited to serve as your 2018-19 student body president and have the opportunity to continue the great work of current faculty, staff, and administrators of the university.
When I first decided to run for the position, I wanted to make a difference for Missouri State and make sure that all students had someone advocating for them.
I’m delighted to continue to advocate for the values of the university, upholding traditions and creating new initiatives that distinguish Missouri State from other universities.
This upcoming year will be filled with great successes and it all starts with remembering who I serve: the students.
Getting my start as a Bear
My mom is my big motivator. I grew up in a single-parent household with a brother and a sister. My mom never got the opportunity to go to higher education, so when I first came to college, it was a shock to us.
When my mom dropped me and left, she had her own emotions … then I had to find a way to kind of combat mine and find my role within the university. So, when I got an “A”, I always thought how proud my mom was. I also think about what I have been given the opportunity to do. Not too many people are fortunate enough to go to higher education schools, so I think about how much I have received in life.
SGA: A chance to get involved across campus
I think what inspired me was looking at other student leaders when I came in as a freshman. I saw what they’d accomplished and the things that they did with their lives. I remember Ashley Crisafulli, who was the student body president in 2015-16.
Student Government Association was the first organization I got involved with. Ashley and her story, and just witnessing things that SGA accomplished, really inspired me to do more.
I was involved in high school with every organization we had. I really wanted to get involved at Missouri State too, but couldn’t with everything. We have about 400 organizations, so it was a time for me to choose based on what my passions were.
SGA inspired me to do what I wanted: Make a difference at Missouri State and in the Springfield community.
I served as sergeant-at-arms for the last two years. I worked a lot with senators’ applications. I assigned committees, maintained rosters, took attendance and recorded votes. I also did the senator training. It was like an onboarding process to get them more comfortable. I think all of that prepared me to lead as your SGA president in 2017-18.
I have changed a lot in college. My grandparents raised me too, since my mom was a single mother for a long time. I grew up Southern Baptist. When I came to college, I had the opportunity of seeing the world from my view, and my views and my passions have changed in general.
I’m more passionate about social issues that are going on — not only in Springfield, but nationwide. I’ve developed as a person as well. My communication is better. I’m more confident in myself, because I am kind of on my own and I’m developing my sense of what I can do.
I don’t have that supervision over me 24/7, so it’s like if you make a mistake, you’re on your own. It helped me get into the adult world. In general, my values and my passion in life has changed since coming to Missouri State and getting away from a small town in Arkansas.
Visiting Missouri State
Missouri State wasn’t my first choice. I grew up in Texas and looked at Baylor. It’s a little bigger than what I was used to.
I graduated with a class of 21, so coming to Missouri State was still like a shock to me, getting used to the number of students. But when I toured Missouri State, something that drew me was the environment. You could tell that it was a small community where people cared about each other.
I got to meet with a few professors, and they cared about what I wanted to do in school. That drew me close because when I went to other schools, it was more of a, “Yes, you need a 3.5 GPA. You need this, this, this, and this to graduate.”
Missouri State was like, “Here’s our resources. We’re more than happy to help you.” Especially coming in as a first-generation student, the experience was a shock. Even applying for colleges and doing essays — Missouri State was a clean, “Here’s my name. This is what I’ve done in high school.”
I was more comfortable coming here than I was to any other school, so that’s kind of what drew me to Missouri State.
It’s been a good choice ever since.