Fresh Ideas are Driving Force of Student Leadership

April 10, 2013

Many of the women elected to Student Government Association for 2013–14 are already rising stars within the Mary Baldwin University community. Find out what inspires them to leadership.

President: Emily Miller ’14

“My inspiration for running for office was knowing that I could help make a difference on our campus. I’ve really found my niche in student government and the more I learn, the prouder I am to be a part of it. Not many campuses can say that they are primarily student governed, so to be able to be a part of our campus government process really means a lot to me,” said Miller, a history major from Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. Miller previously held the SGA secretary position and most recently served as SGA vice president. Next year, she hopes to continue the hard work of the Executive Committee, and ensure that her fellow student leaders feel comfortable working with each other. “I think that leaders at Mary Baldwin either come in bold, or become bold, but in the end they are all changed for the better,” Miller said. “Leadership at Mary Baldwin gives us experiences that will not only help us to be better students and better people, but will also carry us through the rest of our lives.”

Vice President: Rebecca Stearn

“I honestly couldn’t imagine not being a leader. My freshmen year I thought I was going to just come in and sit in my room and do nothing, but I got involved and have never looked back,” said Stearn, a business major from Hampton. Earlier this year, she served as SGA secretary. She previously served as sophomore class president, junior class treasurer, ACORNS co-chair, and every position on the Senate Board. “I love being able to hear the student body’s concerns and hopefully be one of the people who addresses them,” Stearn said. “Planning events is fun and exciting, getting to work with my fellow students and our advisors is great, but most of all, I love Mary Baldwin and I like knowing that what I do has a lasting impact. And I have the ability to give back to the college community that has already given me so much in three years.”

Treasurer: Samantha Janovich

Baldwin Program Board (BPB) Chairwoman: Amber Ocasio

“My blood doesn’t run red, it runs pink.” This was Ocasio’s motto when she ran for BPB chairwoman this year — a nod to the color associated with BPB and to the passion that she holds for the campus organization. “My freshman year I was very interested in all the events BPB had to offer and I did my best to make it to as many of them as I possibly could,” said the arts management major from Mechanicsvillle. Next year will be the second year in a row Ocasio has held the BPB top spot. Previously, she served as BPB treasurer and student advocate treasurer. Campus leadership has led Ocasio to national conferences and on-campus ceremonies, such as the gala to launch Ever Ahead: The Campaign for Mary Baldwin University. “Being a leader at Mary Baldwin is what has made my time here so meaningful and memorable,” Ocasio said.

Inter-Club Council (ICC) Chairwoman: Kristina Lee 

“I am very passionate about the goal of ICC, which is providing structure and guidance for clubs on campus,” said Lee, a junior communication major from Buckingham. “Being able to help students start clubs that interest them definitely makes my day. The best moment for me is when a club’s constitution is passed in Senate and I see the smiles on their faces.” Lee has also served as an ACORN orientation leader, ICC vice chairwoman and treasurer, big sister in the Big Sister/Little Sister Program, member of Ida B. Wells Society, Constitution Revision co-chair, Lambda Pi Eta honor society chapter president, and communication director for the Mary Baldwin Live Election broadcast. Lee hopes to increase the visibility of ICC and Executive Committee and encourage more students to start clubs on campus. Leadership at Mary Baldwin is something that anyone is capable of doing or being a part of,” Lee said. “There are so many opportunities on this campus that students can involve themselves in and I think that Mary Baldwin truly does help you become a great leader.”

Judicial Board (JB) Chairwoman: Hillary Blake

“Being a leader is tough but it is also full of rewards. It’s great to be in an environment where there are so many different types of leaders. You can really learn a great deal from the variety of leaders we have here,” said Blake, an arts management major from Prince George. Blake is returning to lead JB for the second year in a row. Blake also served as a representative of the campus organization as a sophomore. “The board has made great accomplishments,” Blake said. “We’ve reorganized how we operate and handle cases, and at the time of elections we were working on revising the student Code of Conduct.” 


Honor Council (HC) Chairwoman: Jazmine Davis

“A leader at Mary Baldwin carries much in the way of responsibility. It is a difficult, but rewarding job. You are tasked with being a resource for your student body and to do the best that you can to lead your fellow students in the correct direction,” said the junior biology major from Charlottesville. Davis’ leadership experience at Mary Baldwin includes serving as HC representative during her sophomore year and an ACORN this year. She was inspired to run, in part, to increase communication among students and faculty about honor code rules and violations. “I believe structure as well as tons of fun are needed to make college a great experience,” Davis said. “I saw an opportunity to serve the student body by helping them to understand just how important it is to be honorable students and people.”

Lead Advocate: Kristia Vasiloff