Name: Billy Price
Year in School: Senior
Campus Involvement: Co-President of Spectrum (LGBTQ-Straight Alliance), Student Director, Buck Rodgers Business Leadership Program
Fun Fact: I'm a choreographer and dancer with national champion titles.
HC: How did you go about starting as a college student? What kind of advice would you give to freshmen wanting to be active?
BP: Just get involved! Miami has so many student organizations- which is a blessing and a curse. Try any organization that looks interesting! It may take a little bit to find your niche, but you'll also learn so much about yourself as you go along.
HC: How did you get started as an organization leader? If there's more than one thing you're involved with, what is your biggest passion?
BP: I was lucky in that one of my organizations freshman year had an amazing leadership opening, and I became a Co-President by my sophomore year. While I'm no longer involved in that organization, it bolstered my credentials as a leader. In Spectrum, I filled the Alumni Liaison opening on the Executive Board my sophomore year, and then ran for the Co-Presidency and won. My biggest passion with my diverse grouping of organizations is transformational leadership. I love leading an organization and seeing it grow and improve under my tenure, and luckily each of my organizations allow for me to do that.
HC: What are some of the biggest challenges that you face in your position as an organization leader?
BP: One of the biggest challenges has been focusing on the people aspect of leadership, especially in times of conflict. Everyone has these grand ideas about how they will lead an organization, and as leaders, we are responsible for aligning our members around a shared vision and inspiring them to work to make that vision happen. When people disagree with your decisions- however effectively they present their dissent- you must still find a way to maintain your integrity to the vision while simultaneously ensuring that your member feels like he or she has been treated equitably and is valued. This balance is often an art, and it's one I have been working on.
HC: What is/are your proudest accomplishment/s in terms of student involvement and/or being a student at Miami?
BP: Two of my proudest accomplishments came out of times of crisis, but that enabled me to showcase my leadership in highly visible way. Last year, we had a pair of events in response to rather unfortunate circumstances. The first was Miami's response to Westboro Baptist Church's picket, which I worked extremely hard to ensure remained a positive event. We had amazing levels of support for the event from all levels of the University- from the President to first-year students just coming out of the woodwork. It was an utterly inspiring and energizing to experience.
The second event was held after the hate crime uptown last spring. With only five days to put an event together, Brooke Warren and I were able to plan a symbolic protest in a way that was uniquely Miami. We again had astounding support, with the President, Dean of Students, and Mayor of Oxford in attendance, along with a large group of students. Our counter-part event in Cincinnati also had a huge group of people in attendance. One of the goals of our event was to run a fairly comprehensive marketing campaign to really elevate the visibility of the presence of hate crimes on Miami's campus. On top of attaining positive news coverage in al the major local news outlets across the board, we also attained national visibility through outlets such as Huffington Post and The Advocate.
I would say the other accomplishment I'm proudest of is the balance I have achieved in my life. I have maintained academic standing that enabled me to become a Provost Academic Achievement Award winner while also leading two student organizations and participating in several others, all while keeping up with an active and demanding social calendar. This balance has- in all honesty- kept me sane across the last three years. Everyone should find the balance that works for them… it's one of the most important things you can do.
HC: What are you most looking forward to this school year?
BP: I'm most looking forward to focusing on long-term strategic development for my two organizations. Student organizations are unique in that we have turnover of leadership every 1-2 years. However, both of my organizations have visions for the future- visions that I would hate to see hindered by the turnover of leadership. One of my goals is to develop a long-term strategic plan for each organization, while also improving the sustainability and efficiency of the groups.
Spectrum also has some new partnerships that I'm so thrilled to be growing, especially as we pursue greater collaboration with the Greek community and Career Services. These are partnerships that will truly begin to change the climate at Miami, and I couldn't be prouder to be a part of these changes.
Finally, I'm extremely excited to see what kind of novel events pop up this year! There has never been a "normal" year, so that surprise factor is always one to look forward to.
HC: What are your plans for after graduation?
BP: I will be moving to the beautiful city of Minneapolis, MN, to start my career at Target HQ as a Merchandise Planning Business Analyst! I'm so excited!!
HC: What legacy do you hope to leave behind as a leader?
BP: It's simple: Leave it better than you found it. I hope that people remember- if nothing else- just how much passion I have for the organizations I leader. But if they remember more, I want them to be able to say, "Wow. Look how far we've come."