A conversation with Luke and Jace
Published: Thursday, September 20, 2012
Updated: Thursday, September 20, 2012 11:09
Since Luke and Jace were elected last spring, they have been busy developing the 10 points of their ambitious L.E.A.D. platform.
Students may be unfamiliar with who they are and how their job relates to NDSU students. The student body president and vice-president sat down with the Spectrum to introduce themselves to freshman and returning students, to clarify their role at NDSU and to explain how students can get their voice heard in the Bison community.
Luke Brodeur, the Student Body President, is a senior majoring in Business Management. He became involved in student government as a freshman. He has been a student senator and a finance commissioner before his current position.
Jace Beehler, the Student Body Vice President, is a senior majoring in vocal music education. He has also been involved in student government on the campus and state level. He has been a student senator and the executive commissioner of academic affairs before his current position.
The team met through student government and Blue Key Honor Society and decided to run together last November.
Q: What is the purpose of student
Luke: Our mission is to leave the university better than when we arrived. Really, it’s very broad. If there is any issue that pertains to students, there is a good chance that we are involved in it. I see us mostly as advocates for the students and people who stick up for the best interest of students. Whether that be providing opportunities for students to get involved on campus, making sure that the institution is supporting students when it comes to academic issues, or issues with student affairs departments, that sort of thing. In general to make sure that student interest are being looked out for across the university and across the state.
Jace: The other aspect is that we just serve as a resource for students as well. We have already developed relationships with a lot of the key administration around campus. When there are issues that students or organizations have, we already have the relationships developed that we can help them directly with individuals that they need to talk to.
Q: As president and vice-president,
what is your role specifically with
the university and the student body?
L: As student body president I kind of oversee our executive team, which is where the majority of the work happens. We have 10 executives on our team and they are the ones who do all our programming and they lead groups of students who handle projects and give input on different issues. So [I] oversee that and make sure they have the resources they need. In more of a general sense, being an advocate for students. Going [to meetings with administration, faculty, state-level people etc.] and saying in general this is what students want. Some of the specifics, when President Bresciani came on board he appointed the student body president to his cabinet, which is a really great honor and has been a privilege to see that level of leadership at the university.
J: As the student body vice president, I oversee the student senate, so the legislative branch. We have 35 members in the senate. It’s a great team of workers. Work on the projects that we have, the executives we have, and they can work together to start new projects. They work with students directly, the people that they represent. It’s a great way that we all connect and work as a team.
L: We both also have the responsibility of following through on our platform. We feel strongly that we were elected largely because of the issues we represent.
Q: Were you involved with student
government from your freshman year? Was it something you planned to do from the beginning?
L: For me, yeah it kind of was something. I did a lot of student leadership stuff in high school. In high school it always kind of felt flaky, it felt like practice leadership almost. Then coming to NDSU I had a couple friends that helped me become involved in Student Government at a very low level at first and just kind of check things out.
J: I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to do my first semester. I was not sure on NDSU right away actually. I think mainly because I wasn’t involved. Then I heard about student government. I applied to get on senate and actually was shot down. I applied again in the spring and then became a senator and was a senator for a year.
Q: Do you see politics in your future?
L: I don’t see politics in my future. To me this is different than a political type position. This is a lot more programming, event planning, leadership training. Policy is a big part of it, but not the only part of it by any means. I’m not sure I could handle it personally (laughing)!
J: I actually would say I would see eventually getting involved in politics at some point in my life. Maybe not on a huge scale, but you know, within the city I was in or whatever it may be. I think politics plays in quite a bit with education…inner workings between principles, teachers, parents things like that. I think a lot of this is helping me prepare for those situations in my future.
Q: How do you balance the demands of student government while still being
J: That’s a tricky one sometimes. I t’s one of those things where you have to balance your time wisely, and you have to be okay with not getting a full eight hours of sleep, ever really (they laughed). I enjoy everything I’m doing both in student government and in my classes so it’s worth the extra time and loosing a little sleep here and there. You just have to kind of buck up and just do it.
q: What is a typical day for you?
L: For me, the best part about this is the variety. You don’t really know what’s going to happen or what’s going to come up. All sorts of different topics, some very serious some really, really fun. It’s that variety that keeps me going, “what’s going to happen today?” It’s just a fun, it’s hard to even call it a job, it’s just a fun position because you get to be doing all sorts of different things and utilizing all sorts of different skills.