College Government President (3)
Kimberly Chia Yan Min ’19
Hello! My name is Kimberly from the Class of 2019 (she/her/hers). I am running for College Government President (CGP) because this campus needs courageous leadership: Courage to transform our hurt into hope, and also courage to challenge some of our existing institutional norms.
Over the past three years, I have seen and felt how Wellesley is a difficult place. We as students need to feel that Wellesley holds for us meaning, recognizes our worth, and transforms us for the better. There are times where it really does. One of those times for me is meeting new people in my job a writing tutor on this campus! But there are also structures and behaviors on this campus that also really degrade our sense of self-worth as students. Both in spite of and because of our identities, we hurt from not being heard. If our voices are heard, we still hurt from being misunderstood and dismissed. On-campus healthcare provision has been a persistent problem both in quantity and quality. It is also no secret that work is not compensated equitably on this campus, especially good work that serves our community. Critically, the student body is also coming apart – we are competing against each other for space, time, and resources. These are issues that are on my heart, and are what I hope to direct CG’s efforts towards.
We need to build up trust from within us as individuals, and also as a student body. Only then can we more clearly and strongly advocate for ourselves and others from a position of abundance and power. Not from a position of scarcity and fear that what we have will be taken away by someone else.
College Government is integral to making this happen. As CGP, I aim to build CG as a trustworthy institution that honors our deepest hurt and our highest hopes. This means transforming Senate into a student-centered and resolution-oriented institution, where student opinion and action directly contributes to legislative change. This not only means improving internal policies (e.g. SOAC, SOFC), but also College policies. After all, CG’s has much clout and influence with the administration – it must wield it wisely.
While I have not been an elected Senator, I served on SOAC in my sophomore year, and was also a student representative to the Board of Trustees. I have also led a small project on Paramecium Pond that brought diverse campus stakeholders together. I acknowledge my inexperience, and am thus so very willing to learn and grow. I am a fallible human being, and that will not change with me being the CGP. That is why I cannot, and will not do this alone. I hope that you will give me a chance to be your CGP. It would be an honor to serve, and I promise to honor your vote. Let us courageously hope and work for this campus to become a meaningful place for all. It will be difficult, messy, but very much worth it.
Esther Jaffee ’19
After serving in Senate in my first year and as SOAC Organizations Coordinator in my sophomore year, I’ve experienced the challenges of student government from more than one perspective. For this past year, I’ve explored what it means to act as a student advocate on a different scale: within my hall as an RA, in my job as a high school debate coach, and through independent organization, activism, and writing. I have the experience necessary to capably execute the duties of the President and the perspective from outside of college government to be critical of strict adherence to the status quo.
There are some kinds of suffering that I can understand all too intimately, and some experiences – of love and pain and solidarity – that, as a white cis woman, I never completely will. My identity affords me, too frequently, the privilege of ignorance, but it’s my constant undertaking to be attentive of the way my experience of the world affects the way I interact with it. I’m blessed to be frequently in the company of people who hold me to a high standard, and I promise as I write these words that I will continue to apply the highest standard of self-criticism to my motivations and my actions.
In the role of the Presidency, I want to set a climate that supports activism and empowers and recognizes student activists and their work beyond tolerating it. I want to make decisions in the office of the President motivated by a desire to extend more social and institutional resources to low income and mentally ill and disabled students as well as students and community members whose struggles are informed by their racial, social, and ethnic identities. We need to do more to recognize and support the people on campus whose fight for racial justice is not optional but comes part and parcel with everyday life.
Fundamentally, I want the choices of the office to be made from a perspective that recognizes the profound influence of experiencing Wellesley as a minority student and that generally puts the amelioration of suffering before self advancement and administrative comfort.
I am convinced that the opportunities afforded by Wellesley as an institution can be wielded to empower us as actors and activists. I hope to start more conversations about mutual aid and how to connect with and navigate existing resources. I would be nothing without the kindness of strangers and the charity of friends. We are nothing without each other, and we, together, can demand more from the administration and do more to appreciate community members who invest so much of their time and energy into the defense of life and dignity.
It is already an honor to be of service whenever I possibly can, and it would be an honor to serve this community in the position of President and to be held to the integrity of this office. I hope you’ll consider voting for me.
Madeline Wood ’19
My name is Madeline Wood and I am excited to announce my candidacy for College Government President. I am running for CGP out of love and respect for you, the student body. Over the past three years, I have seen the many ways in which Wellesley College both can and can not support you. I have heard of and experienced the difficulty of navigating our bureaucracy to find supportive resources and worked hard (and sometimes failed) at balancing jobs, friends, mental health, and schoolwork. I want to serve you as CGP because I aspire for this campus to be a place where you can not just survive, but thrive. For this to happen, we need a College Government that is willing to engage and advocate with you.
As a student activist on campus, I have experience navigating the space between students and administrators. As a member of the SLAP Work Study Campaign, I met with college administrators and learned how to translate student needs into questions and actionable items for administrators to complete. I also learned how to be persistent and steadfast about students’ needs. As a supporter of broader activism on campus, I always keep an eye on the most pressing campus issues. Since I was a first year, I have been listening to my peers’ unique and collective struggles. From issues around mental health, to disability support and working while being a student, I try to understand the variety in the Wellesley Experience.
During my presidency, I would apply this knowledge and experience to serve the Wellesley community at large. My predecessors have done a great job at beginning to “bridge the gap,” as Maryam Khan put it in her Statement of Intent, between students and the administration. This year we had town halls on the multicultural requirement and “inclusive excellence” that connected administrators, professors, and students. I hope to continue this work by actively connecting students and organizations with administrators and strengthening the relationship between CG and the student body by actively engaging student organizations and individuals on campus through open mics, discussion groups, and meetings. These events would provide students outside of College Government with an outlet for their thoughts while also creating spaces for community building – extending relationships with College Government beyond the Senate Room.
While I may have my own preconceived notions of Wellesley’s most pressing problems, what really matters is what you, the student body, bring up to me. As CGP I would be flexible and open to listen to your concerns as they change. I will make sure that these matters are conveyed to the Wellesley Administration. I will make it my mission to be available for cultural, political, and social organizations on campus and the student body at large and foster spaces for open dialogue. My goal is for College Government to be not just a governing body, but a conduit for student voices.
Sarah Sansón Hernández ’21
Hello Wellesley Sibs! My name is Sarah Sansón Hernández 21’ (she/her/hers) and I’m running for CG Secretary-Treasurer. Throughout my first year at Wellesley, I have become aware of the need for a more open, accessible, and transparent College Government in order to best serve our community. A good way to fix this is to better communicate the goals and purpose of CG so we can become a better tool for advocacy on campus. The Secretary-Treasurer and the Comm-Comm team have the power to keep the campus informed in order for students to fight for the Wellesley they want. I plan to do three main things during my tenure:
- Promote CG as a place for advocacy, discussion, and change on campus
- Have active websites and social media pages to keep the campus engaged,
- Visit orgs and Ho-Cos to promote CG and to discuss campus issues that CG has the power to change or influence with myself and (hopefully) other CG Cabinet members
As a first year, I have had an extraordinary amount of leadership experiences at Wellesley which will help me during my potential position: CAN rep and VP of Dower, Dorm rep for Class of 2021 Council, Senator for Mezcla, and a member of this year’s Election Committee. I am confident that I have the skills to serve this campus as CG Secretary-Treasurer and chair of the Communications and Finance Committee. So, I hope you vote for me, Sarah Sansón Hernández, for CG Sec-Treas for the 2018-2019 academic year. Thank you!