Communication Officer

AnnaGrace Katzenmeier
She/Her/Hers
English and Education, Dance

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I was Student Body Secretary my senior year of high school, as well as class secretary freshman through junior year, and I loved being able to influence the school and how school functions are run. I am also in the communications field and I have always loved participating in promotion and marketing.
Even though I have only been in Kildhal for a few days, I already love the hall community and would love to expand that community all around the hall, as well as on campus. I am also interested in possibly being a junior counselor or resident assistant at some point during my four years, and I think getting involved with residence life through Hall Council would be a great place to start!

Tell us what we should know about you, when considering you for this position.
I have a lot of experience in marketing and “spreading the word” through fundraising I have done for my school, church, and various mission and service trips. Most recently I went on a mission trip to Standing Rock Indian Reservation with a Young Life Expeditions group, and I had to fund raise the entire trip cost on my own. With that being said, I sold shirts to help raise funds, whcih involved quite a bit of marketing. I was able to spread the word through facebook groups, GroupMe chats, Instagram, and posters. I also wrote fundraising letters to over fifty people, which ended up contributing about one-third of the funds for my trip. Although I know the funds part have more to do with the treasurer position, it is the marketing that went behind getting the word out that I truly enjoyed and am passionate about.
I also consider myself a very welcoming and inclusive person, and I feel I can bring that to the hall. I love meeting new people and getting to know others, and I would love to get to know the people on my hall even better and contribute to the community life of my hall. I am a good listener and can also offer advice when asked for, and I would love to not only promote but also just be there for my peers as they go through adjustment to school, just as I am.

How would you ensure that residents are well-informed and involved in hall initiatives and programming?
I would ensure that residents are well-informed and involved in hall initiatives and programming through social media, posters, group chats, and word of mouth. I would love to start a GroupMe or Facebook group for the whole hall or individual floors so that people have one place to check for all hall resources, information, and activities. I also have already gone and knocked on many of my hall-mates doors, and I think by doing this and getting information to them by word of mouth I could more personally inform students about all that hall council is doing.
Furthermore, I can hang posters not just on the bulletin boards, but also by sliding them under doors on the hall, so that even if students are not checking a centralized location, the information will still reach them.

President

Joquan Williams
He/Him/His
Psychology and Social work

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I’m interested in this opportunity to run for hall president because I feel as though I can be a strong advocate for everyone. I have always been told that I have strong leadership skills in which will benefit me in anything that I do. So with this I wish to become my hall, President.

Tell us what we should know about you, when considering you for this position.
I was the president of Student at my former High school, treasurer of the St Olaf Trio Upward Bound Student Leadership Committee(SLC), and a member of WEB/LINK Crew. With all my prior experience in the listed above leadership organizations, I know how they are ran and I know how they should be run. I have always been a person that is all about having an inclusive way of life. I am always willing to hear what the people want, to serve them best. .

What programs would you like to see in your hall this year?
It would like to see programs In which promotes while educating us about culture, sexual orientation, and people’s artistic abilities. For example culture night, talent show, GSA night, and karaoke night.

Jules Barivan
He/Him/His
Undecided

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I’m interested because I think it’s a good way to get more involved and engaged with this campus and with my peers, and to meet new people. I think I can do a good job and make change that will improve the residents’ lives as well as mine.

Tell us what we should know about you, when considering you for this position.
I have two years of highschool experience in student government, and one year in junior statesmen of america. I know almost everyone who lives in Kildahl, and I my threshold for disliking somebody is really high. I can communicate effectively between the Kildahl residents and the rest of the council.

What programs would you like to see in your hall this year?
I’d like to see more evening activities, more connection between the whole hall instead of the individual floors. I’d also like to see some sort of shelves in the showers on all floors to store stuff such as shampoo, and I’ve heard a lot of support for these ideas from the residents.

Senator

Kate Sebes
She/Her/Hers
Dance

What do you know about the Student Senate?
The Student Senate is comprised of individuals who meet weekly to discuss current issues and topics brought to light by the St. Olaf campus students and staff. The Senators role is mainly comprised of relaying information from the student body to the council and vice versa.

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I am interested in this position because I want to get involved in campus student life activities. I believe all voices should be heard and I like listening to people. As a Senator, I will have the opportunity to not only listen, but advocate for all parties involved.

What skills/interests/etc. would you bring to this position?
Through past experiences serving as President of Student Council and National Honor Society, I have learned that listening and serving with others builds community and trust. When organizing or developing a plan, I engage my peers in the creative process and work as a team to make decisions. Using the servant leadership approach helps groups work cohesively together and improve not only our experience, but also the overall activity.

What is one thing you would like to see Senate address this year?
As a current freshman, adjusting to dorm life can be difficult. Sharing a new and small living space with another peer, while also becoming accustomed to a communal bathroom is challenging. For these reasons, I would like to address dorm life, more specifically the communal bathroom spaces. After talking with students in Kildahl Hall it has come to my attention that the showers do not have adequate space for showering materials. Students are placing their clothes, towels, and shower caddies on the ground where they get dirty and wet. As Senator, I look forward to discussing possible solutions to address the identified needs.

Joe Linder
He/Him/His
Political Science/Economics

What do you know about the Student Senate?
The student Senate is a crucial legislative body that acts as a voice for sub-communities across St Olaf. If elected onto the Senate I would form stronger relationships with the people from my hall while truly making a positive difference in their college experience. Furthermore, the Senate would provide insight into pursuing a major in political science, and offer a glimpse into the anatomy and cognition of local government, a field I would like to pursue beyond college.

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
A position on the student senate benefits both my educational and social aspirations on the hill, and gives me an opportunity to do meaningful work for my friends and peers. It would also be a great chance to involve myself in the St. Olaf community as well as represent, get to know, and learn from the students in my hall. In the past I’ve made the mistake of abstaining from school government and have regretted it throughout the years. I promised myself before attending St. Olaf that I wouldn’t sideline myself any longer; letting my political experience and passion for giving voice to the people go to waste.

What skills/interests/etc. would you bring to this position?
I have always considered myself to be a well versed, confident speaker and listener. I am patient and do not let my predetermined impressions or personal disagreements influence conversation and friendships. I also have a considerable amount of knoledge in politics and of government, from high school AP level classes to my active involvement in model United Nations, and am well versed in procedural settings and can be productive in committee. Furthermore, I can offer unbiased and considerate perspective to issues regarding student life while also maintaining my own moral integrity. But most importantly, I will exude a passionate and motivated attitude toward my goals for improving life on the hill.

What is one thing you would like to see Senate address this year?
I believe one of the most important resources anyone can offer is their ability to listen and empathize. I also believe the best way to deal with anxiety, loneliness, and stress is too be open and honest with a trustworthy person without fear of being judged or criticized. I understand that St. Olaf has plenty of trusted staff ready to do just that; however the role we all as students play in preserving each others mental health cannot be overstated. At my high school emotional and social vulnerability weren’t appricated as serious issues among students, and now more than ever we rely on our peers for advice and support; which is why taking the next step towards openness with mental health is imperative. It might be difficult at first but the more we persist and the more comfortable we can become with each others emotions, shortcomings, and flaws the better. After all, it’s up to us to change the taboo culture of speaking about mental health.

Gretchen Ellis
Political Science

What do you know about the Student Senate?
The Student Senate is a place where students from all around campus can get their voices and concerns heard and discussed in one place. People from all different backgrounds work together to make laws and participate in other legislative activities to make sure the campus is welcoming and able to work with every student’s needs. I also know the Senate is very involved in all aspects of the campus.

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I am interested in this position because I want to make an impact on St. Olaf. At home, I was able to make an impact on my community through being involved in various activities. I was involved in the Overland Park Teen Council, where we were able to learn about our community and I was a leader in a project called ForwardOP that mapped out what my city will look like in 20 years with various city officials. Through those activities, I was able to make a lasting impact on the community and I want to continue to do that here. Being in the Senate would allow me to continue this mission and become more involved in St. Olaf.

What skills/interests/etc. would you bring to this position?
As mentioned before, I was involved in a lot of civic engagement related programs throughout high school. Through Kansas Sunflower Girls State, I am very familiar with parliamentary procedure, which would be helpful for this role. I am incredibly interested in the political system and the Senate would be a way where I can further that interest and take it to new places. I also am a good listener. I like to hear what people have to say and if I am representing the wants and needs of my hall, this skill would be useful.

What is one thing you would like to see Senate address this year?
I would like the Senate address politics on the campus. Since an election year is coming up, making sure students don’t feel attacked or unsafe around campus, no matter their opinion is really important. I know students can feel nervous to speak out about their opinions or identities on campus because of the increasingly polarizing political climate and I think creating environments or programs to address this issue and to provide a safe space for students to speak their minds is important. I also would like the Senate to address mental health concerns.

Charlie Moe
He/Him/His
History

What do you know about the Student Senate?
I know that it’s a place and program dedicated to voicing student’s concerns and works somewhat like the US senate

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I have always had an interest in the democratic process and I’ve done canvassing work for various organizations

What skills/interests/etc. would you bring to this position?
After I’ve talked with many of the students at St.Olaf I’ve noticed a distinct deficit of social awareness, particularly in the area of class and wealth inequality. Going into St.Olaf, I’ve decided that this would be an interest of mine and I hope to share that interest and passion as a hall senator

What is one thing you would like to see Senate address this year?
I’d like to see the issue of material wealth disparity become a larger part of social awareness on campus, either through supplemental campaigns to raise awareness or simple adjustments to training procedures.

Treasurer

Gabe Lepak
English/Social Work

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I want to help the rest of the dorm electorate maintain the finances of the dorm to efficiently and effectively achieve their goals and promises.

Tell us what we should know about you, when considering you for this position.
I have energy and lots of ideas that I can bring to the table on how to work ethically and efficiently.

What are some skills you possess that would be advantageous for managing hall finances?
I am honest and forthright with the state of information. I am organized and motivated to delinate financial responsibilty. I am fluent in the Office Suite and can produce memos and spreadsheets like no tomorrow.

Emily Pelszynski
She/Her/Hers
Chem or Biology or Chinese

Tell us why you are interested in this position.
I am very interested in being the Kildahl Treasurer. What sparked my interest in this position is that I would like to be involved with the Kildahl community on another level. I feel that being a member of Hall Council is a great way to get involved in the community as well as it being a way to get experience in managing both the social and financial aspects of an organization. I have always been interested in finances and this would be a great opportunity to connect this interest with my want to get involved.

Tell us what we should know about you, when considering you for this position.
I have quite a bit of experience with managing finances and creating budgets. One example of this was in high school. I took an Economics class where the first semester went over the typical topics such as different economic theories, the work of the Federal Reserve, and supply and demand. During the second semester, the main goal was to create your own business plan. To do this, I went and interviewed business owners and talked to them about how they manage their finances and grow their businesses. Then later on, I made my own 5 year financial forecast for my own business plan which included things such as getting the correct licensing, paying wages, managing facilities, and paying insurance fees. This was a great opportunity to go and talk with professionals and then use what information I got from them and create my own business plan. My plan was a Dog Daycare just in case you were wondering.
A second example of my experience was in my senior year of high school as a captain of my swim team. I took on the responsibility of designing, pricing, and receiving orders for team apparel. To do this, I had to communicate with my customers, the team, at several times during the process as well as communicating with vendors. The order was $500 and I purchased it up front, and then had to go and collect the money from everyone who ordered. The process was a bit stressful, but it was definitely worth it to be able to create something for my team.

What are some skills you possess that would be advantageous for managing hall finances?
I would describe myself as a very organized person and I think that would certainly be advantageous for managing hall finances. I am constantly referencing my planner which has my daily schedule, homework, upcoming due dates, one-off events, etc. In addition to being very organized, I have been making my own budgets for quite a while now, so I would say that I have had lots of experience in this field.

Inclusivity Advocate