Aaron Jordan (20’C): Learning Through Leadership

Name: Aaron Jordan

Year: Senior

Major: QSS and Sociology

Minor: Math

Campus Involvement: Residence Hall Association (RHA) President, Student Government Association (SGA) RHA Representative, Club Swimming

 

HC: Could you briefly explain to me what RHA is and what your role as President entails?

RHA is responsible for overseeing a lot of the engagement that goes on in the residence halls on campus. Mostly what we do is oversee the Hall councils. So every hall has a president, vice president, etc. that put on events and advocate for improvements within the hall. I’m responsible for overseeing my exec board members, and every member, including myself, has a hall council that they oversee. I go to Complex hall meetings and help troubleshoot issues and make sure they’re advocating for their residents. Outside of that, we also do more large scale events like Last Lecture, where we invite a professor to give a lecture as if it was their last ever. Mostly what I do is just make sure that RHA is being represented in the best light possible. My organization is 160 people, so it is important to make sure that everyone is doing what needs to be done and representing RHA well.Image result for the office world's best boss

 

HC: What inspired you to run for RHA President?

It was really the most logical direction I saw for myself. My sophomore year I was treasurer, and I never saw as much action and follow up as I wanted. It made me want to take the reins and effect change in a larger way. So it was never really the main decision, it just naturally led to that next step, me thinking “yeah I could do this.”

 

HC: Favorite Netflix show to binge?

I just finished Stranger Things and I loved that. I’m actually not a big tv show person, but I do need to watch this new season of How to Get Away With Murder.Image result for stranger things

 

HC: How do you feel that student leadership has helped to prepare you for life post-college?

If you were to look at me senior year of high school, I am not at all the same person. I was very much inwardly focused. I was mostly thinking about jobs and college. But now I’m much more outwardly focused, and thinking about how I can inspire people around me, and how I can help them work to the best of their capabilities. Leadership has definitely shaped me and shaped my mindset of how I want to go about in life. It has made me think less about myself and more about the greater community. It has also shown me that I can actually affect change on a real level. I would say I’m overall more conscious of my surroundings: things I say, how they affect other people, and how to lead people.

 

HC: What has been the most important lesson or skill you learned during your time in RHA?

The most important thing I’ve learned is to be a go-getter and to be open but to always know how to protect yourself. Protect your emotions, protect what you believe in, and don’t be scared about doing it. If it’s something that’s important to you and is affecting you, then you need to take a step back and analyze that. I don't think I had that skill before I came to college. Now that I’ve been more focused on others I’ve learned to navigate that balance and recognize those people don’t need to be in my life versus those who support me. This also applies to organizations and recognizing and appreciating those people that support you and do the best they can to help you. Being a leader on campus, it is important to make sure you don’t get burned out. You take on an emotional and mental responsibility, so you really have to be honest with those around you and let them know when you’re not feeling your best

 

HC: Any hidden talents?

I can cook. I love to cook and I have around 400 original recipes. I started cooking at like 4 and started making original recipes at 12, so they’ve definitely accumulated over the years.Image result for salt bae

 

HC: Who are the most empowering women in your life?

I would definitely say my professor in Sociology, Tracy Scott. She’s probably my favorite person at Emory. I was first in her intro class freshman Fall, and then in her freshman seminar that Spring. And even when I didn’t have her in class I would still go to office hours and chat. I really got to develop a relationship with her. We talk about life in general, and she’s really guided me through a ton of things. I have a very different outlook about being at Emory from getting to know her, and it’s made me realize how lucky I am to be here.