With spring semester and another school year coming to a close, a lot has been happening around here. One of the most important recent events was the Student Government Association elections. Her Campus got a chance to interview 2021’s Class President and Vice President, elected now to serve their second year in these positions. Class President Jasmine Paul and Vice President Dahiris Taveras talk about their love for SGA, their close friendship, and their hopes for inspiring leaders in the upcoming class of first-years.
Her Campus: First off, tell me a little bit about yourselves! In terms of major, hometown, possible career aspirations.
Jasmine: Well, my name is Jasmine Paul. I’m eighteen years old. I’m majoring in math and minoring in chemistry, and right now I’m looking into becoming a chemical engineer.
Deedee: My name is Dahiris Taveras. I’m nineteen. I’m a bio major, psych minor, on the pre-med track. And I’m looking to become a pediatrician.
HC: Awesome! So you just got re-elected as President and Vice President of 2021 in SGA. What has that been like so far, since you had the position this year?
Deedee, Jasmine, and Jasmine Dickens (SGA Secretary)
Jasmine: It was a learning experience. It helped me fix my organization skills as well as my communication skills. In high school, I was actually a lot more quiet.
Deedee: Same here.
Jasmine: And now I’m a lot more open with talking to people and wanting to hear what people have to say.
Deedee: Yeah, Jasmine’s popular! It’s kind of the same for me. I held a couple leadership positions in high school, but it wasn’t as demanding and I didn’t have to talk to that many people. It was clubs, you know, not like the entire school or the entire class. And I’ve definitely learned a lot about the processes, since in high school it’s way more informal.
HC: So what are the processes like? What’s the extent of it, commitment-wise?
Deedee: Well we have weekly meetings that are mandatory.
Jasmine: And that’s for SGA itself, the class officers also have our own meetings separate from SGA. But we have those probably every month.
Deedee: You have to attend every meeting. You have to be part of one of the committees, and actually be actively part of the committee. And you have to have a liaison that you work for, I guess. Even though it doesn’t sound like a lot, once you put it together plus classes, it’s a lot of responsibility. You have to have at least one meeting with your liaison, depending on how much information you can get from them every time. For Res Life, you may need a lot of meetings, but for Jasmine with accounting, you may not need as much. I’m food services, so sometimes I need to go with complaints or comments, but it’s not too often since there aren’t changes every single time.
Jasmine: Then as officers, we do have to be a part of SGA, but then we also have our own class stuff. Like we had to help with Black Cat, plan the class event, have a fundraiser. So we have those separate things as well.
HC: What would you say is your favorite thing about being an officer so far?
Jasmine: I get to meet a lot of nice people. Well, a lot of interesting people, too.
Deedee: For me, I think it’s learning the actual processes of how everything goes and being able to actually follow them. We actually go through each and every process, like we have to second every motion, the motion has to be brought to the table…
Jasmine: It’s like real political stuff.
Deedee: Yeah! And I’ve got to meet a lot of people, and it’s really nice to get close to everyone involved. It’s nice having those connections.
HC: Great! So for next year or in the time you hold these positions, what are your personal goals? What do you hope to accomplish?
Deedee: I mean, I would like to run for either Vice President of my class senior year or for SGA Executive Board. I think it would be cool to go up in rank like that.
Jasmine: I want to stay class President. Hopefully, all four years. Just make every year better than the last.
HC: And I know that y’all are really good friends, is that because of your work together in SGA or were you friends before?
Jasmine: It’s funny how we met, actually. I met her through Bre Rogers. Bre was talking to me about “Oh, we should campaign as a team, Deedee said something about it”, and I was like, “Who is Deedee?” When I first met Deedee, I thought she was stuck-up. But now I love Deedee, and she’s like my favorite-est person on this campus!
Deedee: Aw thanks! Yeah, we met through the campaign.
Jasmine: I was like, “I mean, yeah I guess we can campaign together” and we just started talking. We had no choice.
HC: Would you say you guys make a good team now that you’ve worked together for so long?
Deedee: I think so.
Jasmine: We’re like Obama and Biden.
Deedee: Alright… [laughing] You’re so annoying.
HC: Since you’re representing our class, how do you honestly feel about our class color and our mascot [Scottie’s Angels], personally?
Jasmine: I love the class color, because of the yellow and purple combination. I just think it looks cute. I’m okay with the mascot… I don’t hate it. But I also don’t love it. I mean I wouldn’t mind having it for the rest of my life.
Deedee: Yeah. I guess in terms of inclusivity, I would understand why some people are not okay with it. Personally, I thought of the movie rather than any religious affiliation with the word “angel.” Also, I thought of “angel” as in the endearing term, not Christian or anything like that. So I’m okay with the mascot. I don’t mind it.
HC: Lastly, is there anything you want to say to the incoming Class of 2022 or anyone who hopes of running for class officers in the future?
Deedee: Do it!
Jasmine: Yeah, go be a leader.
Deedee: Don’t be scared. It’s a commitment, I’m not gonna deny that all of us complain. It’s just the truth. But in the long run, when you see what we’re able to achieve — I don’t know if you heard about CJ, who was able to pass a resolution. We put together what the mayor of Decatur read [about the stoplight]. The price of Main being lowered. Those are things that we’ve been able to help make happen.
Jasmine: That and the Priority Housing.
Deedee: So I think that even though it’s a commitment, once you see the changes that you can make, it really pays off. I would just do it.
Jasmine: Don’t be afraid. You never know what can happen.
HC: Thanks for that advice! Are you excited to be sophomores soon?
Deedee: Yeah, I am.
Jasmine: Thinking about that Ring Ceremony!
HC: Me too, me too. Thank you guys so much for doing the interview!
As you can see, Jasmine and Deedee truly are a dynamic duo. The class of 2021 is lucky to have them for another year at least! They’re both sure to do a lot of good during their time as President and Vice President, and hopefully, they’ll inspire the new class of 2022 to be as dedicated as they are. Wish them luck in their second year at Agnes!