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Bethany Smith: Born to Be a Student Leader

Name: Bethany Smith

Year: Junior

Hometown: Miami, FL

Relationship Status: Single

Major: International Affairs with a Russian Language minor

Involvement on Campus: Campus Housing, Receptionist, Phi Eta Sigma Honors Society, Leadership Council Member, PeaceJam Mentor, Lambda Alpha Epsilon Criminology and Criminal Justice Fraternity Member, and the FSU Choral Union.

Her Campus (HC): You are so involved on campus, which is really inspiring considering how stressful college can be! How do balance your time?

Bethany Smith (BS): Oh goodness. Balancing my time is the hardest thing for me because I want to be deeply involved with everything! The way that works best for me is to schedule out my days. From when I wake up to when I eat meals to when I study and even to when I can have a Netflix break (my favorite part of the day). It’s a little neurotic, but it helps me remain on track and be able to accomplish everything I need to without stressing myself out too much.

HC: What has been the most rewarding organization you have been involved with at FSU?

BS: PeaceJam has been the most amazing experience for me. It’s an international organization led by Nobel Laureates that seeks to educate and empower youth to address various social justice and human rights issues. FSU hosts hundreds of high school kids from all over the Southeast and helps them start projects of their own to combat or solve these issues. The projects don’t have to be big. Any act whether big or small is vital in making this world a better place. Being a mentor has been special because as much as I seek to “teach” them about global issues, I find myself being taught by them and inspired by their passion.

HC: How do you feel that this experience helped you build relationships on campus?

BS: I have always been a little unsure of myself especially when it comes to taking leadership roles, but this experience helped me feel comfortable enough to come out of my shell and voice my opinions. PeaceJam really emphasizes being yourself and I found that once I stopped being afraid to do so, I was able to build meaningful relationships not just with fellow mentors, but in general as well.

HC: Do you have any advice for students looking to be more involved on campus?

BS: Be proactive! FSU has over 600 organizations on campus, so you may need to go on the website and just look for something that seems interesting to you. And if you’re like me, big events like the involvement fair can be very overwhelming, so leisurely exploring the FSU website for groups that coincided with my interests was the best for me. But, don’t be afraid to try something new.

HC: Now for some fun questions! What show on Netflix are you watching right now?

BS: I’m getting way too excited about this question! I tend to binge more than one show, but right now, I’m binging on Parenthood and Charmed.

HC: How would you describe your style for a day spent on campus? 

BS: My style is very feminine-edgy. I love dresses and lace and patterns, but I also love combat boots (Doc Martens!), tights and Gothic inspired jewelry. However, I tend not to dress up very much when I’m going to class. You can usually find me in the more causal ensemble of jeans, boots and a sweatshirt. Once the weather gets nicer, I’ll be more inclined to look cute again.

HC: Where is your favorite place to eat in Tallahassee?

BS: Genghis Grill forever and ever.

HC: Tell the readers one fun fact about yourself.  

BS: I’ve been playing classical piano sine I was six. I’m kind of out of practice right now, but it’s like riding a bike, once you get back on it all comes back to you.

HC: If you could have coffee with absolutely anyone, who would it be and why? 

BS: This question was brutal, but I would have to say J.R.R. Tolkien. Tolkien is the author of one of my favorite book series, The Lord of the Rings. I’m not even sure if I would be able to get a word out before swooning. The series is influenced by mythology; Christianity and other fantasy works as well as being a social commentary on the ills of industrialization. His work continues to inspire people all over the world. And the fact that he was a friend of C.S. Lewis, who wrote The Chronicles of Narnia, just makes him even more epic.

Hollie Morey is a creative writing enthusiast, when she is not studying for her double major in communications and political science! In her free time, Hollie loves to curl up with a great novel or the latest edition of Glamour, as well as catch up on her favorite shows: Pretty Little Liars and Mad Men! Hollie has a particular interest in writing about fashion and local current events and can be found looking on Her Campus for great style tips or for ideas for things to do in Tallahassee!
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