Spike Series – Student Government
CollegeAdvisor.com (formerly Bullseye Admissions) presents its spike series webinar on Student Government in a 60-minute webinar and Q&A with a Bullseye advisor. Our presenters will share their insider perspectives on how to develop an application spike in this area and how they applied successfully to colleges with this spike. Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2020-10-20 Student Government
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I hope you guys are all having a wonderful evening, depending on which time zone you’re at. I for 1:00 AM from the west coast, but I’m currently in England, so it’s a little bit late for me. So if it is late for you guys as well it’s nice to know that I have some company.
Hi everyone. Again, welcome to the bulls-eye admissions spike series, webinar and student government. To orient you with the webinar and timing and different chats. We’ll start off with the presentation, then answer your questions in a live Q and a on the sidebar. And in the public chat, you can download our slides in the handouts tab, and you can start submitting questions in the Q and a tab.
For some background, my name is and I am a graduate student right now at the university of Oxford. And I am an alum of the university of Pennsylvania at Penn. I was the chair of the suit committee on undergrad education, which is the oldest branch of student government at the university. And we dealt with education policy.
I have. Another presenter with me Austin Bennett and he is a class of 2025 students at Stanford and she is having a little bit of connection issues. And I believe he is sorry. Can y’all hear me now?
All right. Good. Sorry about sorry for the, on my end. No idea what caused it. But yeah. Hi, so I’m Austin. I am a current gap year student at Stanford university. And a little bit about me currently working in software development for a FinTech company in Boston, where I’m from. And I’ll be taking a gap year to pursue that from Stanford this year, and also just pursue a ton of other things.
And show you better on, I apologize for the technical issues on my end. Yeah. Okay.
And again, I’m Armand. I am a graduate of awesome.
Okay. Cool. I, me and our are going to talk about different areas of student government. So I’m going to talk about it from the high school perspective, and Armand is going to talk about it from the college perspective, because we have done it at those two levels. I’m going to start off with a little bit about high school student government.
So the first question that a lot of you probably have is, so what is student government. I have just a few key phrases for y’all to keep in mind up here. So student government is basically loosely defined as a general body of representation at a school that the students can get involved with to have some voice in the administration.
So that can vary widely from school spirit to like actual managerial duty, to a lot of the times clubs which we’ll go into each of those groups in more detail. And yeah, as prior set responsibilities can vary greatly between these bodies, but generally the one thing they have in common is that they are just student representation.
So we’re going to loosely define that a student representation for student government and typically they can hit you. They can handle issues running the gambit in terms of school, life. But normally they handle school, spirit clubs. Financials such as funding. Sometimes for fundraisers, if with, or without clubs sometimes charity drives like a coat drive.
They do a lot. And in terms of membership, they normally include, for my high school, it was a student body president, student, body, vice president, treasurer, and secretary. But at some schools, they do it by the grade level. So you’ll have a class president class, vice president, class treasurer, class secretary.
There’s a lot of different roles, but those are typically the most for most common. And one thing that’s really nice about student government is it’s typically the go-to place for any faculty. When they’re trying to get student input on a decision. Yeah, that’s first thing a little bit about it. What it is.
So the poll are you currently in student government or are planning to get involved? Just so we can know a little bit about who we’re speaking to what y’all may or may not already know. And if so, what we can talk more about. Okay.
As soon as we start to get the results on the polls.
All right, cool. So we have Response is still coming in, but generally, so it looks like we’re preaching to the choir a bit. Most of you are well, not most, but around half of you are in student government, which is great. Student government is one of the best extracurriculars you can have on your college resume in terms of showing off just a swath of all sorts of activities.
It’s really cool. It shows a lot. Granted we’re a little bit biased here, but it’s definitely something great to me. I apologize. So for those of you who aren’t in student government why should I participate in student government? Again, I’ll preface this by, I’m a little bit biased. I was on student government for three years of my school.
And I loved every second of it. And I’ve also found to do it in college, but start it’s a really good way to make a difference in your school. So particularly if you are politically involved a lot of people who aren’t typically like to. Decisions in their community community outreach affect policy.
And this is just a way to do it on the school level. So it’s a way to actually make change in your community, of course, while your immediate school community. Sorry. Of course there’s going to be varying levels of power and responsible ability between each student like body group, but overall it’s probably the fastest and best way you can make a difference in your school community.
And as I touched on earlier, participating in student government, especially a elected position shows leadership on your college application. So it also gives you a little bit more weight in terms of decision-making. So yeah. Again it’s a great extracurricular to have cause you’re actively involved and shows role liked by your peers sometimes most of the time.
But it is something where also it’s probably the best way to get your opinions about the student body and also how you can improve different measures in your school. It to the school board. And one thing that’s really cool about student government. It depends on the school, but most of the time there are different roles.
And so you can work on issues that are important to you. School, spirit and clubs are two of the main ones. And so you can specialize. So at my school, they had disciplinary committee, they had a actual student government as well as a Class officers, which was essentially school spirit.
So you could actually do governing policy, which is what I did, which was student government class officers, which were kind of school. And disciplinary committee, which handles discipline and school regulations. And second penultimate point it can help you get to know the faculty and the school board or if you go to a private school, sometimes a board of directors and that can be really good as a club leader, especially.
And it also can help you. Change in the school, just a lot more, again, touching on that point. It really is the best way to make change in your school community. And it definitely helps you make those connections to make it happen, even if it goes outside the bounds of student government. And lastly, it’s just very fun.
I’m sure there’s a lot of, And so getting involved with student government. So there are a few things that you need to consider. So it’s what kind of student government should I choose? That should be the first one. If your school has one kind of student government, then the answer is very easy.
There might be roles that you can specialize in. For example, a president will typically take on a leadership of the student body, whereas a vice-president will do. Some of the more behind the scenes work. A secretary can typically keep track of notes. They also can this, these were the rules of my school.
They basically just are. They organize all the meetings. They keep track of progress, votes, all sorts of that. Treasurer can keep track of financials sometimes with clubs. If that is a option at your school. And other things that you might want to consider are what issues do I want to tackle? Like how do I want to make a difference in my school community?
And one of, so by specializing, you can amplify your voice and student. So let’s say again. So I was really involved in the club system when I was my school. And so I specifically took on a position that while I was the head of the club committee. So we basically wrote all the guidelines for clubs as well as handle the financials for that.
So we would advocate on behalf of the clubs to get funding and run charity. For the school. So that’s an example of something where you could specialize in an area that’s important to you. And in addition to that, it’s where my interest best fits. So again, pick a position that you’re interested in to run for, not necessarily the one that looks best, because one thing that’s really important to understand about student government, at least in relation to college applications is impact is just as important as the name.
How am I going to make the biggest impact? How can I improve my school community the most? That should be the first thing on your mind if you are in student government. And lastly, how much time can I commit? Student government is typically one of the words. Extracurricular activities. We typically would meet for three hours a week at my school.
But that can vary widely. So make sure that you are not overworking yourself, but if you genuinely do love it, it’s something where sometimes it’s, it can be worth a three hour commitment. You just have to make it work with your schedule. So now this is specifically for elected positions, but if you are seeking one.
You need to find out if it is an elected position or can I just sign up for it? So some schools will have a student body that they go for information that will specifically tackle just they try to have it as open to the student body as possible. So you can get as much input from as many different voices, but sometimes they have an elected position.
So an example of that, Student body president student body vice president treasurer, secretary, like in my school. And sometimes they will have two tiers. So they’ll have a general representation. And then from there they will elect president vice president treasurer, secretary And so that’s something that’s really important to know because you want to be able to be prepared if it is an elected position, because often does that involve speech writing and depending on your school campaigning my school personally didn’t allow campaigning, but some people do that.
And finally when writing a campaign speech. So if you are going for an elected position, so again, student body, president, student, body, vice president, et cetera you normally have to deliver a campaign speech. The most important things in a campaign speech are to mention specifically. So normally people, when I describe myself, I’m like, if I were to just describe myself using a bunch of positive attributes, that’s what everyone else is doing in their speech.
What’s more important. And what will make more of an impact to people is if you talk about the things that you specifically want to tackle in your time as student government and so mentioning specific goals and how you plan to accomplish them is a great idea. Also talking about your past experience.
If any, on student government, it doesn’t even have to be student government. It can be leadership on the track team. It can be a leader as a club leader. Organization-wide that’s actually what I did when I first got under student government was I talked about my experience at another club. And lastly use humor people who like pouring campaign speeches.
It’s always a good idea to be a little bit funny in your speech. It’s something that like can make the crowd want to listen to you more and it can grab their attention, which is great. And it will make you more likely to actually get the position that you look for. And so don’t the first one is make false promises.
This one is really tempting because again, there’s always this thought that people will go for what they hear, even if it’s not true. And yeah, that might possibly work for one year. It’s not going to work for a reelection camp. And so it’s better to just stick to goals that you can get accomplished.
People will also appreciate being straightforward with them. And to read a generic speech again, avoided just positive attributes without actually mentioning anything specific or three alienate groups. This goes without saying, but just try not to make your speech pointed towards one group because you’re representing the student body as a whole.
You’re not representing say the hockey team. You want to make sure that you are including everyone in your coalition, and that’s how you drive out the most amount of votes. And so making an impact on student government. So once you have this position, you’re like, how do I actually make a change in my community?
So typically student government is responsible for school spirit. So some of the really good ways to get involved with that are organizing pep rallies before a game. That’s what we would do for the cross officer, sorry. That’s what the class officers would do. I was, I had myself as not a class officer, but we did work with them where to organize pep rallies before large events, such as homecoming.
We organized homecoming where, so you can get involved with different things surrounding athletics and just general school spirit. And oftentimes I know our mind is going to touch on this later. Is, you can make changes to your school’s policy. So when I was a junior on student government I rewrote our club guidelines just to make it easier for clubs as well as to get financials.
W so you can tackle issues like that, that you’re passionate about, or a testing policy. If you’re looking for equity in testing. So for example accommodations for people who. Okay. It’s disadvantages when testing. I know our student government actually negotiated with teachers to get certain test days for different subjects so that people would never have five tests on one day.
And so that worked out great and extracurricular funding. Normally if there is a body, a executive student government body they’re often asked about funding. So for speakers, clubs and how we should properly allocate. So that’s great. And so when consulting students as I said, previously, heads of school and a board of directors, if you’re in a private school, will typically look to student government before implementing any major changes, so you can talk directly to them.
So you probably the biggest way to make an impact is to just actively talk to the heads of school because they will listen to you. You are the student leaders. That they put forward and you’ve got to use, so please use it. It’s very important. And so our Mon is gonna take over the next section.
Wonderful. So as you guys approached the college application season, you’re going to have to make sure that you’re describing our experience as well. And I was really involved in student government in high school and in college. And a lot of the work that I did, I felt like it was pretty difficult for me to show the amount of time and energy that they put in.
You need to make sure that when you were being so involved in something like student government and as Austin alluded to, sometimes you’re spending like 30 hours a week on it. You want to make sure that you are able to, relay that information really well and make sure that you’re able to stand out.
Student government is something that a lot of students do. During my orientation at Penn, they had something where they need everybody, raise their hand if they were involved in student government. And it was a very sizable minority of people were involved within it. So you want to make sure that you’re standing out a little bit because everyone does the same pep rallies or homecoming and whatnot.
So for example, I went to a really large public school, so we would have. Really intricate dances where over a thousand students would come. So that is actually, requires a lot of planning. That’s not something that’s just a hundred students. You’re going to have to preplan the DJ months in advance, make sure that you have security.
So you can give some quantitative metrics. Like how many people came to the dance, how large was the. We would have a five figure homecoming budget. So that kind of showed that when we’re spending $30,000 on decorations and whatnot, this is not just some typical, like small little fair, like it was making like national headlines because we’d, designed their school like Disneyland one year.
Giving some kind of quantitative metric we had. 12 five foot by seven foot painted canvas, decorations. Also, if you are a leader in student government such as like the president of your class or the president of the entire, student government, you can just mention how many people you oversaw.
So you were like the leader of other student leaders. Additionally, another really helpful thing is, was talking about the processes that you put in place for your organization. So that kind of shows that you have the ability to not just really follow what people do year after year. So you’re changing either some of the processes whether you’re initiating that.
Prior using your constituents feedback, using the faculty and staff’s feedback. So what was the impact on institutional memory? So did your junior year, did you start an inaugural fair that has made profits every year and was in your town’s newspaper? Additionally, if you just something small.
In some way, shape or form improving the lives of your faculty, staff, students, community and community could be the school community, a specific grade, the entire, if it’s a public school, just like the surrounding areas, you can mention things like, we found ways to help student parking run a little bit more efficiently.
So there was not as much. Traffic and we reduced noise complaints by 20% or something like that introduces a quantitative metric, but it also just shows your initiative and your ability to create institutional change and by institutional change or institutional memory, the institution being the school or student government, you’re, starting a process that is changing the way that an organization is thinking or it’s interacting with the outside.
So additionally there are a lot of alternatives to student government. Some schools, some students in the Q and a talks about how do we start student government, or if I don’t get selected for student government I like Austin was in charge of the clubs at my school, my junior year, and then was treasurer my senior year.
But my sophomore year, I really wanted to be involved in student government and we’d, only two spots for sophomores and I didn’t get a spot. So there were other opportunities for me to get involved or either increase my chances of getting in. So first you can either start like link crew or a type of peer advising program.
So that would often be juniors and seniors that are advising freshmen. Especially if you were at a school where it’s like a lot larger or multiple middle school skied into that high school, or if it’s a private school that only does nine through 12. If you have a peer advising program, you can have students that are either.
How should I go about trying out for the baseball team one or tryout seasons or what, whether I should choose between regular biology or honors biology or AP biology, or what’s the best place for me to get lunch? Those you can really make a difference in the lives of these students. You also are able to.
Create some cultural change. If that’s something that you want to get involved in. Sometimes you can do that through student governments, and then you can do that directly by creating a friendly environment for younger students or starting something like link crew or a peer advising program, which creates a stronger community.
Additionally, some of the aspects that you can do through student government is to implement some type of policy change. And that is there are some cognates, like a model UN or speech and debate that get out that rhetorical speaking practice, whether, student government, sometimes we’ll be making, like speeches to the class or to the community.
And these are other ways that you can really hone your public speaking skills and also your argumentation skills. Additionally, those are other ways that you can get to engage with students from other schools or nearby. And lastly there’s some kind of community involvement, so this could also be directly through student government.
For example, one thing that we started at my school was all of the schools in my sports league, we did like a council of student governments together to be like, what was your best way to get students to come to this homecoming dance? What did you do about the student issue, where there was a lot of.
Competition around SCTE season, senior fall. And the other ways are to, do something like American Legion, which is boys state and girls state, which is open to everyone in the U S additionally, there’s some political activism work that you can do. So you’d have a say in the community much larger than just your high school, so that could be canvassing for votes.
Right now, a lot of students that are not quite 18 yet they can’t vote themselves, but you can help them. Just go door to door or phone, phone bank to get other people, to register, to vote for people that are registered to vote, but haven’t voted in the last few elections. You call them they’re special like registries, and you can help them create voter plans in order to make sure that they get out and vote.
And then you can also just set up tables in your community just to help people that are either freshly 18 and having it registered to vote or have moved into the community to make sure that they are up and running to the hope because a lot of people will think about it like November 2nd.
And for most states that’s past the voter registration deadline.
And so again, I mentioned that I was really involved in student government in college as well. So I just opened up a pool for those of you that are considering they’re seniors in high school right now and are considering college or are a little bit younger and are still college painting. Do you plan to stay involved in student government and college or.
Maybe you don’t think high school is the right time, but you want to join in college or maybe you’re doing it now. And you’re like, oh no, I don’t want to do that college. In fairness. I thought when I was in high school, I was like, I am so over model, you went into government. And I ended up being the secretary general of our model, UN and chair of our student government two different years.
So things are staying More the same than you might expect sometimes. So right now, 70, oh, we have a little shift to wants to stay in student government in college or join student government college and a third are maybes. So that also totally depends on your college. So one thing you can do is look at student government and the way that your college looks at it whether or not you want to join.
So for example Penn has a number of branches. I didn’t really want to do a planning. I wanted to be more involved in education policy. So that’s why I joined. Whereas if it were another college that didn’t have as strong a student stay and education policy, I probably would not. So as I mentioned, elite colleges or field with former student government people, and there’s different types of student government.
So the three main categories are. Having a policy bend, doing concert or event planning and club management. So the club management side, colleges are filled with, different student clubs, whether that’s like the hedge fund club or whether that’s the environmental club. There’s usually like a branch of student government that only deals with the funding that goes to these clubs and the club management.
So making sure that some things that they do. At Penn, for example, student government had a $2 million budget and over a million dollars of that went straight to clubs. So that was for clubs to be able to have pizza parties and whatnot. And there was one club that dealt with. Like one branch of student government that like dealt with the allocation of that funding.
Then there’s a concerts and event planning. So that’s like the more fun side of student government. So Penn has sprinkling, which for many years was like the largest college party on the east coast. Northwestern has Dillo day, which usually has like really cool performers. Like I believe if had Kendrick Lamar, Penn has had Kesha and Zed and All-American rejects, which was actually a lot of fun.
So you can be like the branch that, and then there’s also a special branch that like deals with the really small artists, like hundred guests. So you can be part of the group that is like, Liaise with these really famous performers as managers and getting them to come. And you might be the person that’s fetching Kesha, a bottle of water before she sings.
Or you could be like, you know what, there’s this really cool indie artist that I’d love to have an intimate 100% performance with that’s something that student government. On the other hand, you would have some policy. So some of it is just like supporting international students. So that would be like, being the one for students that have to quarantine, once they arrive depending on the state.
So NYU and Columbia. Are located in New York and New York state mandated that if you came from certain states, you would need to quarantine for two weeks because of coronavirus. So one thing that some branches of student government could do would be like working with the university to be like, okay, let’s find, let’s make sure that everyone that is quarantining for two weeks is in an apartment that has other students there as well.
So you’re not completely alone for two weeks. You’re like quarantine together. Or making sure that the meals that are being delivered are really up to par or students that have dietary concerns of ways that they can reach the. The office in order to make sure that they’re getting the right food and some other ones would be like helping install some gender neutral bathrooms.
For example Penn has a nursing school and the nurses are like far and wide or like the vast majority of nurses are women. And there was like an equal split between male bathrooms and women’s bathrooms and no gender neutral bathrooms. So one thing that our struggling. Didn’t sing. It’s like, why don’t we convert some of the, like men’s bathrooms to gender neutral because there’s a backlog of women that tried to go to the bathroom in these buildings that are predominantly women.
And there’s wait, two men, there’s not double, like proportion of men. Women or like gender neutral bathrooms. So that’s something that another branch of student government has worked on the bridge that worked on, spent a lot of time on the grading policies. So some of it was like, why do computer science classes have like strict curves of only like 20% students can get A’s?
And that might try to work with the departments to make sure that, students aren’t unfairly penalized or finding ways that we could help make sure that students have ways to. Bring up student complaints, whether a professor, has some microaggressions in class or the professor isn’t being properly trained on how to use zoom, things like that.
So there’s all these different methods of student government that aren’t just planning homecoming. So please feel free to answer, ask some questions. We can. If you would like we can not publish them. Then we can answer them privately. You can privately chat near Austin. Again, my name is Armand.
Sorry, the name shows up. Oh yes, you can DM either of us. And we can share your question and answer it. But without sharing your name. Okay, cool. Oh, cool. We got a few. And we could also go over some of the questions that you guys submitted from the, before the webinar too, as well. So cool. Okay. Let’s start with do you have any recommendations on how to get oh wait, where is that? Sorry. That’s tardy answer. So any new questions or should we just jump right into the questions we already have? Oh, cool. We have one other leadership activities and student. So typically if it’s a large club, you can be the president of a club.
That’s one, for example, and again an athletic sports team would be similar. Those are other potential opportunities for leadership. There are also inter high school association. So like I had a friend who was really involved with the high school Democrats of America. So there are certain political groups that you can get involved with that.
And also I’m normally not at the federal level, but at the state level people running state, Senate and state rep campaigns are often very much looking for volunteers for canvassing. So you can get involved there. Those that’s another great way to show leaders. Just because you’re actively making a difference.
And that’s one thing is making an impact is just as important as leadership quote. So make sure that you’re including that as well in your applications. Okay. Any other questions? I’m also, if we could go into the, just questions that were asked before the webinar
So yeah I’m, I’ll just start with the pre panel questions. So once someone asked, what is the position that sticks out the most on student government? I read once in a book by a former Dartmouth admissions officer, she was talking about how typically president sticks out the most, as well as vice president.
Those two are the gold standard, but, and, but that’s not to say that any student leadership position, they’re all great. It’s just a question of, normally you have more opportunities. To make an impact president and vice president. And that’s what colleges are looking for more so impact because impact, they want to admit people who are going to change the world a lot of the time.
And that’s a really good way to do it.
Yeah. I agree. One thing though. Slightly helpful was I was treasurer my senior year. Which, doesn’t have the same prestige of being president or vice president, but it was pretty nice to be able to just talk about like finance a little bit, because that’s what I studied in college.
Yeah. And that, that’s actually a perfect example of doing a position that was. Like suit your interest specifically because that’s something where you can apply your talents. So that’s a really good idea. And so next what our president election oh, sorry. Okay.
Yes. So I went I was vice president of my student government. So like we, so we did representatives, we had four per grade and then from there we elected. So I was vice president my senior year. And because of that, I went to a A diversity training conference is also a great cause, remember the LGBT community.
So I appreciated that for that reason so that we could better work on inclusion measures in my school. So that was one thing that we did. I didn’t go to that one, but yeah, there, so if you’re going to talk about that, I actually talked about that in my deferral. And just how there were all these changes I wanted wanted to make all my student government after learning about that.
So you could actively work in what you’ve learned from other groups. And as Armando was saying earlier, like that input from other schools can be really helpful because it shows, you’re not just thinking about your school as like an isolated area, but also connecting it to your community at large.
Somebody asked a question about being shy to leader and regarding participant participation in student government and how it’s had a really huge impact on their life and trying to find a way to make their stories stand out. I one thing that I do speak a lot with my clients is to not really.
About having a cliche story. Because at the end of the day, there are like hundreds of thousands of people that apply to elite colleges and universities. And if we’re to have that, like you’re not theirs every year, like you’re not going to be the most unique person. So just be you like you unapologetically.
And if you, even, if it is a kind of cliche story, if it’s your story, you’re able to like, explain it really well and really authentically you’re not like stretching in which case. The admissions officers not getting to know the real you. So over the last like five years that I’ve been working with clients, one thing that I really tell them is that like your personal statement?
Yeah. Most important for you to show the admissions officer who you are. And part of that is like psychologically that when the admissions officer knows you and they don’t know where resume, it’s a lot harder for them to reject you. So they will build rapport with you and like root for you.
That’s also something that I, I’ve spoken to admissions officers because I’m an admissions interviewer as well. So make sure you. But stay true to that. So within that, I think the important is like specificity. So what are some examples that you were really shy and you didn’t step up?
What kind of pushed you to step up and be like a leader? What made you. Like confident was it out of necessity that nobody was running for student government and you were really upset that, no one was raising to the administration that, the bathrooms were always clogged and therefore you were like, you know what?
I want to be able to use the bathroom and you decide to run and in doing so you had to prepare for a lot of meetings with them. Principal of your school and that just made you feel more confident and then it just naturally, really came to, and that’s something that you worked on. I think if you just say.
Like an in-depth story. You show how you were so shy earlier, what were the cases and steps that brought you up? That is going to be most important. Yeah. And one thing, one little thing on there. Is it? Yeah. Authenticity is the number one thing in college applications, just as a start. And also a lot of these assays are going to look for you to be pretty introspective.
So that could work really well as an essay topic, just taking an introspective approach and be like, why, what caused this in the past? Like how did I get over it and what, how is it going to affect the future for me? So that’s one thing you can take. Outside of other student government clubs, what clubs do student governments work with the most in general.
Okay. So I can, I’d love to speak up. This is just purely, cause this is like my main thing, our student government. So we were really involved with the clubs that put on events. So it, there isn’t, there aren’t like clubs. In general that we are more involved when, unless they, we just are, so we would do occasional inspection.
So just making sure everyone had like a decent amount of members there, weren’t like six presidents of a seven person club, like stuff like that. But generally we found ourselves working with a few clubs in particular. So one was omega, which was like a, like our. Cultural exchange slash diversity clubs, massive club for our schools, I think it was like 10% of the entire student body went to those meetings every week.
It was insane. They’re a great club and they would always have guest speakers. They even literally put on our diversity dare at our school. We worked with them a lot. Also we, one time worked with our high school Democrats in high school Republicans clubs to put on a debate, which was very interesting.
Before the 2018 Senate election. And slash house of representatives options. But so again, I think clubs that we would work most with would just be clubs that we like that are looking for student government help more so than others. Because you’re on student government usually. View clubs as a resource clubs can often help you achieve all of these goals.
If you can work with a club was with the backing of student government, you can do awesome things. I’d encourage you if you’re also on student government to seek that out for example, a club that I was involved with, we we would run the coat drive. That and student government actually was the one who kind of was like, Hey, can you do this?
And so make sure to use the clubs as a resource. And yeah, clubs that student government just interacts with are the ones that interact with student government. That’s the best way it’s cyclical, but it’s the best way to put it. Else asked a question about in student council, some members get like lower leadership positions. And ended up having more of an impact than the like higher ranking members. Doesn’t
You want to speak to us, do you want to speak on this or what were you? Yeah. And so even though the president and vice president gets out the work, so how do we protect the credit for our own work? So one of the wonderful parts about college admissions is that it is you writing the application.
It’s not like the gossip in your like, school of being like, who did this, On the college admission side, just make sure that you were like going to, like what I refer to earlier of talking about who led the initiative, what are some quantitative figures that like really show all of your work, et cetera.
And that way you can just show even though I was not president, I spearheaded this one initiative, which made this long lasting impact on my school and it will, the teacher said that it was like the best initiative that we’ve had in 10 years. Yes. In a student council, like if you were concerned about just that working relationship in, at school, talk with your faculty advisor and be like, make sure diplomatic about being like, I have noticed I put in all of this work and I’m not able to get like the autonomy that I believe I should be getting in there.
The president vice president are getting, a lot of the autonomy, even though I’m carrying out the work. Is there a way that you suggest I go about, Having being able to take lead of these things or have a different chain of command to the president, vice president is taking initiative and not leading the brunt of the work to me.
Yeah. That’s really important. And again, just impact over prestige. Like people have this idea that prestige is the most important thing. Every single position, but what you do with it is so much more important than the actual power you have itself. They want to see that you’re going to use an education at X, Y, Z university to actually go and make the world a better place.
And what’s a better way to do that. Then showing the impact you have with your own respective position, and if they take the credit for it that could work on a school level. And your college application, that’s your college application? No one else is going to really go out, try to claim credit for something you did.
You talked about how you were able to drive it and that will just, that will help your applications out in spades. And as proof of our work you could maybe write a. Like in newspaper or something, you can maybe write a sentence about an essay, but I wouldn’t go talking about it necessarily.
Just because it detracts from the point that you’re trying to make of getting this goal accomplished, and that’s way more important than the recognition you get. They want to see your passion behind what you do in student government. Cool. I have, there’s a few more in the pre
I believe we have to wrap up shortly. So if there’s a quick, nevermind. We wanted to speak with you guys about some of the bulls-eye admissions subscriptions. So we have a starter plan and a scholar plan, which help you in preparation. So you’re not just having college advising right before your applications are due.
So one thing that we tried to discuss is, if you were a freshman, sophomore, or even eighth grader, You can have us guide you through the process of being like, okay, how do I get involved in student government? This is the way that my school does it. And really help you get to either the positions that you want or help plan the impact, and also really frame things around.
So depending on the two plans, you’d be able to have an hour or two hours a week, choose your advisor. So you could be like, I really want someone that has a. Some student government experience or someone that went to a type of college that I went to, or as from a large public high school, in the same area as me or small private school in the same area as me type of a thing.
And you can cancel anytime.
Yeah. We just got, are we still doing Q and a? Yes. Okay. So I just got a really good question, which was like, where can I talk about student government? That’s not in the activity section and a really good way to do that is through the essays. When you write essays it’s often a really good idea to talk about your extracurricular involvement because it shows a different side to the extracurricular.
Than what they might’ve otherwise seen. Cause if I’m an admissions officer, I could see probably know 20,000 kids who like probably not that much. Let’s say I don’t know if there’s 40,000 applications, like 2000 kids were involved with student government and what’s going to stick out to me is the kid who renegotiating the testing policy for a school.
Not just a kid who was just on it. So again, making an impact, making sure they know that impact. Your essays are a great way to do that. No.
All right. Is there another question I really liked actually in this, so I was going to answer this. So it’s like how can one stand out from their fellow student government members? So I would actually say while it’s true, it can be nice to stand out. It’s even better when you can work as a team.
Because oftentimes colleges are really gonna look for a collaborative spirit. So working together with your fellow student government representatives. So like you could talk about how you went to the treasurer to get the financials. You went to the president to speak to the student body about volunteering for for example that can be even more effective.
So if you’re talking about as college as a whole the best way to stand out is to do stuff do something cool, do something that matters to you. Don’t do something just because you think it’ll look good on a college application, do something because you’re passionate about it. That’s really cool.
Absolutely. I think that, having students for years, obviously having gone through high school and college and doing a similar process for graduate school, if you aren’t passionate about what you’re doing, you’re going to have lame essays and. You’re not going to be able to have the same, like zeal from your recommenders that can talk about all of the impact that you’ve made your attitude, your enthusiasm, and you can’t just write as well.
If it’s just I did not like being student government president, but I made that my life.
Somebody asked a question about connecting with us, and we will talk about that in a moment with us. And we are both advisors, so you can have us for one-off application advising or have us as subscription packages. And then there are also a number of other bull’s-eye advisors. Came from different backgrounds, go to different schools that also did student government or link crew and other types of programs that we spoke about.
Yeah. Yeah. And yeah, that’s definitely true. So there’s a lot of us. So you can also fill out an interest form and typically you’ll get matched with someone too, or you could work with one of us specifically. And most of us can pretty much help any kind of student. A lot of the rules for college advising are the same, so something to consider.
And so one, one question I actually also really liked was, does a position on the council matter? Does it matter in the grand scheme of things, because there are so many blah, blah, blah presidents, like for other groups, like that’s I would just go back to the point where it’s like, It doesn’t matter unless you make it matter, like just literally do everything you can to make your school a better place.
That’s all they’re looking for. And student government is probably the best way to make your school a better place. And that’s honestly, that’s just, that’s gold on a college application. And yeah just to add on to Austin’s point, the reason why it is gold is because a lot of colleges. For a number of reasons, whether that’s for alumni donations, for prestige and whatnot, where they care about the university community.
So there absolutely is the aspect that you need to be academically competent to handle the rigor of that called her university. But additionally, they want to make sure that you are somebody that’s going to provide and to take from the community. So that would be there. You’re going to join clubs, but you’re also going to provide your own perspective that you are going to engage with other students.
And you’re not just going to go to that school only attend class, and then head back to your dorm, or if you’re in a city, do something else in the study. So that is most important. All colleges and universities, especially elite private schools where their reputation, their alumni satisfaction are really important.
Hidden fact part of the U S news and college and world report. College ranking system goes off of alumni satisfaction. Part of that is the alumni participation rate. So colleges will make sure that their alumni donate. How do you get students to know me? Really had a good time in the community. How do they know if they, if the college wants their university to do well in the rankings, they want to make sure that they’re going to have something.
Going to engage in the community by being involved in student government or some way that you are actively creating a better environment at your school, you were showing that you care about the community. You’re not just in your high school for classes and you will hopefully likely continue to contribute to that university environment.
So that might seem like a stretch, but it really does make an impact. Do know that it’s like really important for you to be part of it. The wider university. Yeah. And w one question, actually, I totally overlooked this one. This is one I really want to touch on. Cause this is a missing fear that a lot of kids have which is, can participating in like an internship for a specific political figure.
Should you talk about that on your application? Because you don’t like, there’s a fear of kind of showing your political affiliation. So I would say yes and no. So I actually had a friend who worked for the Biden campaign. And that ended up well back, like literally last summer. So it was like a long time ago, but still it, I think it definitely helped him in his application.
It’s always be passionate, always show up. Where are your heart and your sleeve show? What you’re passionate about? Cause that’s so much better than someone who is trying to cautiously guard what they stand for. I will say it is generally good advice to be more cautious about showing conservative political ideologies.
Just just a word of caution. It’s not a don’t do, but just be a little bit more cautious about it. And also cause it can get controversial, but again, it’s nothing that you should just totally stay away from. So that’s pretty important. Just, don’t be afraid to show what you are passionate about.
Probably said that were like 50 times. And on that note again, Austin. Oh yeah. You have our names again, my name is Tess. And you can reach out to us or join bullseye again, join both sides.com. And we’re going to have another spike series in And two days same time and it’ll be about business and entrepreneurship.
And you’ll be hearing about another student who is deferred an offer from Stanford. So again, same type of scenario. And again, please reach out to us if you have any questions. Yeah. Yeah. All right. Cool. And yeah, just take a note of the schedule. Look, see which ones are really interesting to you. Webinars where we’re on all through October and good luck with your college apps.
All of you. Thanks for coming out. Thank you. All right, bye. Yeah.