Mahatma Gandhi famously said, "You must be the change you want to see in the world." And although he wasn’t talking about TMCC’s Student Government Association, his words might make you, as a TMCC student, ask the question: “If I could make one change in the world around me, what would it be?”
If you’re thinking: what can I possibly do? I can’t even leave my house right now. The answer is simple. You can engage with other students to make positive changes at TMCC through your involvement with the SGA. Whether you decide to run or you simply vote, this is your moment to get your voice heard within the context of our campus community.
“There are so many reasons why a student should run for the SGA,” said SGA President Alexandra Patri. “I truly believe that working with the Student Government Association will help you with your future career because you will build social and leadership skills that will enhance personality development. It is also a great way to network and make connections with great people.”
No matter what kind of student you are—traditional, non-traditional, international, dually-enrolled—as long as you meet the requirements (see below) you can vote for your future SGA officers, and you can run for office.
“Being a part of SGA has been one of the best decisions I have made,” said SGA Vice President Valeria Saborio. “It has enabled me to connect with amazing people at TMCC, grow professionally and understand how the system of higher education works here in the United States. As an international student, I feel grateful that I was given this opportunity...working as the Vice President has made me understand myself more as a professional and I have developed many skills that will help me in my future career, even as an engineer.”
Get to Know Your Candidates
Now more than ever it’s important to get to know your community. As a student at TMCC, you are a part of our community: you take classes and you share ideas with other students who are pursuing similar degrees as you are. When life resumes in more normal circumstances, you will also share physical campus spaces with others in the TMCC community which share similar values in regards to the value of education and the pursuit of a professional degree and career.
“I can’t emphasize enough how great it is to be a part of a team that represents all TMCC students...you make sure that student success is a reality at TMCC in all areas,” said Saborio.
By virtue of all of this, you should know the students who represent you because they are speaking to college leadership on your behalf. Learning more about the SGA Candidates can help you to make positive changes in your college experience because you can select a candidate who aligns with your values and vision.
“We all have one common goal at the SGA, effectively represent the students in order to make college life better for everyone,” said Patri. “It is important for you to vote so your voice will properly be heard!”
The election is open and happening now, so be sure to read up on the candidates and cast your online ballot by April 13.
Become More Involved in the TMCC Community
If you want to take it one step farther and truly be the change you want to see in the world, the SGA General Assembly is soliciting for additional, qualified students to run for open positions. In order to qualify, you must be taking a minimum of six credits each semester (Fall and Spring) and maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.25. Additionally, you should read the SGA Constitution, Bylaws and Operations Manual and understand their contents to ensure your compliance. And, of course, you must be in good standing with TMCC, which means there are no current disciplinary actions against you.
If you meet all these standards and you want to make this particular community a better place for all students, we encourage you to apply for candidacy right away. You can make a difference in the lives of others—but also in your own life.
“There will be challenges here and there. I look at every challenge that is put in front of me as a learning experience. From my experience, I learned the importance of thinking outside the box while solving a problem. I also learned the importance of developing and maintaining good relationships with those you work with in case they need to turn to you for help and vice versa,” said Patri of her experience serving as SGA President.
Making Positive Changes
Both Patri and Saborio name their most rewarding project in the SGA to date as the work they have done on the pending Undocumented Students Scholarship. This new scholarship opportunity is intended to support DACA/undocumented students so they can afford more classes throughout the year, thereby helping them to graduate and begin their professional careers sooner. The scholarship is currently undergoing the approval process.
“We heard other colleges helping their students this way and we thought: ‘We need to do this at TMCC!’ I started researching and getting in touch with great people at TMCC and we all worked collaboratively to make this a reality. It makes me so happy to know that many students will be blessed with this scholarship and that they will be able to continue their studies and thrive towards a better future,” said Saborio.
Like Patri and Saborio, you too can make positive changes. How you choose to participate is completely up to you. However, you can’t go wrong with casting your vote for next year’s SGA officers before April 13.
For more information about TMCC’s Student Government Association, contact their office at 775-673-7203.