Smith wants to inspire empathy, create veterans' priority if electedBy Will Jones | 02/26/2016 1:17pm
Q: Can you give me a quick rundown of your life story?
A: So, I am a – my name is Alex Smith, and I'm from Huntsville, Alabama, majoring in political science. I came to The University of Alabama because I absolutely loved the programs that they had to offer and I wanted to twirl with the Million Dollar Band for a really long time. Now, let's see, my freshman year I was involved in First Year Council and, during my sophomore year, I still wanted to continue on with SGA, so I ran for a Senate position, currently serving as the Senator for the College of Arts and Sciences, and I absolutely love serving on Senate, but I really feel like it is time for me to move on to something bigger and really work to actually putting issues into place now and work on the putting the actions into place.
Q: Why do you want to run for this office?
A: So, I really want to run for Vice President of Academic Affairs because I believe that first and foremost before we are members of any sort of organizations, we are students here at The University of Alabama, and ultimately we are here to receive an education, and I feel like I have really good ideas as to how to help students have an overall academic experience as well as reach out to nontraditional students and ensure that students can graduate within a 4-year time span.
Q: What makes you the best choice for this office?
Though I haven't had experience, you know, organizing huge projects, and I've worked more so on the logistical side, I have put a few projects into place in other areas of campus. I have worked closely with the SOURCE and organized the Get On Board Day, and that was a huge event where, you know, I had to pull from all areas of campus, and so I feel confident in my abilities to work with the administration. Well, firstly, also I work with students as well to ensure that their ideas are being heard out and also be their voice because they are the people that I am ultimately representing.
Q: Sure. What's your biggest goal for the position?
A: My biggest goal for the position is to ensure that on campus veterans receive priority class registration, and this is a huge deal because – this is very important for on-campus veterans because when they don't receive their funding in time, they have to take out, in some cases, quick loans just to pay for their apartment, pay for food. Some are living off their savings, and this is a huge issue for them. A lot of them are nontraditional students – you know, they have families, they aren't 18 years old, they're at 24, 25, 27 years old, and so this is very important to them to ensure that they can get their education. And I don't just want to stop there; I want to keep working to provide these nontraditional students different resources and avenues that they can access and have a great time – a great academic experience here at the Capstone.
Q: What's the first thing you would do if elected?
A: I would reach to the administrators and I would also after doing that I would really start to reach out to students and get them involved with the initiatives that I want to put forth, and really just try to get students across campus to be involved with this, and not only make it an effort within SGA, to make it an effort across campus, and that is something that is very important to me is pulling students from areas that you wouldn't normally pull from and trying to get people involved in every corner of campus.
Q: Why should indifferent students care about this election?
A: Indifferent students should care about this election because this is the first time that there have been students who have come forth and have challenged the system, and that's a huge deal for this university because that's never happened before other than the External Affairs position, every executive position is running – has multiple people running for those positions. And so that's very important because the students do have a voice, whether they realize it or not, and I know in the past it's always been – it has always appeared that students who aren't within the system don't have a voice and that their votes don't really matter because they can't assemble themselves, but, you know, as students try on and students vote, their voices will be heard, and these students across campus are the majority, and I hope that they realize that, you know, the power of this election is really in their hands.
Q: Sure. How do you see the campus changing and/or staying the same by the end of your possible term?
A: By the end of my possible term I would hope to see that campus has continued to progress as it has this past year. I feel like this year has been a year of change, but I also feel like there is so much more that we can do to grow as a campus and as a student body as a whole. I really would love to educate our students and create empathy among the student body and really learn to work together with one another regardless of what you look like, where you come from, the color of your skin, what organizations you are involved with, but really, really come together as one and work together to create, you know, a wonderful Capstone.
Q: Can you give a fun fact about yourself for the students?
A: Right, so I am a member of the Million Dollar Band and have been a Crimsonette for 2 years now, and I absolutely love it; it's my favorite activity that I'm involved in here at the University, and my absolutely favorite memory is twirling on Saturdays in Bryant-Denny Stadium in front of thousands of people. It's my favorite thing ever.