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Breaking Stereotypes, Inspiring Change

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FIU chapter.

It’s that time of the year again where a new candidate gets elected to be the face of the university community by holding the Miss/Mr. FIU title. The pageant is to take place on January 30th, but the candidates have been working hard up to the final date. One candidate in particular stood out from the competition, and his name is René Charles. A finance major at FIU, also the Vice President of the Lambda Tau Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc. We caught up with René to ask him a few questions about his candidacy, and here is what he had to say. 

  • What made you run for Mr. FIU?

I honestly wanted to bring value to a position that hasn’t yet made much of an impact to the students living on campus . I believe it was used as a trophy position rather than a role model position.

  • What do you plan to accomplish if elected as Mr. FIU?

Primarily, I would like to have the access and support of the FIU community to stop the gentrification of Little Haiti Miami. I believe with the support of a university that has over 50,000 students that I would be able to make some noise.

  • What else are you involved with in and around campus?

I have held two vice president positions on campus with Men Achieving Leadership Excellence and Success- M.A.L.E.S and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity- Service organization. Both organizations achieved the COBOL organization of the year award under the reign of my team.

  • What sets you apart from your competition?

I am bringing a different perspective to this position.  I would like an opportunity to connect the neighboring black communities and the university while properly exhibiting the characteristics of a fraternity man of the National Panhellenic Council.

  •  Do you think the Mr. & Miss FIU pageant holds a certain stereotype? If yes, what do you think can be done to eliminate that stereotype?

Not at all the past winners have been completely diverse and have done great with their philanthropic endeavors.

  • At such a large institution like FIU, why is it essential to have a Miss/Mr.FIU and what does the title mean to the FIU community?

I don’t believe that the university has given much attention to the title due to the lack of involvement. Here is how I see it, every community deserves proper representation, and the people love to have someone they can pour their college experience into. I want to bring out the best in our experience here at the university through involvement in the community.

  • What advice would you give to college students like yourself who are looking to one day participate in the pageant?

Keep grinding. If you want something bad enough you will find a way to make it happen. Also make meaningful relationships instead of connections and get involved on campus. Find mentors (upperclassmen) you look up to and converse with them. College students are nicer than one would believe.




South African model, dancer, personal trainer and blogger. Lover of God & Life