Non-CGIers may not know that during period 2 on the third floor, a CGI student body of around 200 debate domestic and foreign issues, plan community events through various departments, and operate under their own government and constitution. The CGI presidential elections will be held on April 1st. After Tuesday’s brief presidential debates, CGI students still have many questions about the candidates running for President and Vice President. To help inform you, The Bull has given each presidential candidate an equal opportunity to answer questions about themselves and their candidacy.
Tell The Bull a little bit about yourself. If it is 4 pm, I am probably marathoning Netflix shows. If it is 4 am, I am probably writing an essay. I’ve got two younger sisters, two cats, and an insatiable appetite for “keeping it real”.
Why are you running for CGI President? I’m running because CGI desperately needs internal change and reform to make it work better for its members; it doesn’t need the addition of obvious policies only geared towards pleasing a crowd for a moment. I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunities CGI has afforded me, and I believe it’s helped me grow as a person and as a member of the community, but it’s not perfect. As President, I would first use my creative capabilities to remove some of the stress placed on the average CGI student- and then would I add events to strengthen the community (Senate and Congress breakfasts, anyone?).
What one word would you say best describes CGI? “Enveloping”. In most situations, this is a good thing. It can get annoying, though!
What was your favorite CGI moment? Just like Beth, my favorite CGI moment was this year’s Sophomore PDL! While volunteering, I saw so much of myself and my 2014 classmates in each of the speakers, and it really reminded me of the great connections CGI cultivates between grades.
What do you think of the new Congress format? I think that it’s an interesting concept, but the time wasn’t right for its execution. Because of it, the body is more focused on specific ideas, and we get a better background on those ideas- however, it’s resulted in a lot of extra work, and a forced narrow-mindedness in bill writing that really isn’t fun or helpful for CGI members.
Do you think CGI is politically balanced? CGI definitely has a strong liberal slant. It’s not going to go away anytime soon, but the body can get less wrapped up in the politics when we debate issues more related to our school and our community. Assigned bill topics have really brought out the partisan side of the Institute- this isn’t a positive or negative thing, but we should provide more opportunities for avoiding this inherent bias by opening up bill topics and encouraging bills (and resolutions!) related to tangible issues.
Considering the changes made to 2nd period by teachers this year, how do you as a student propose to make substantive change next year? I really think adding “bill-writing” and “caucus” days just make 2nd period more confusing. The teachers’ intentions were good, and there are some aspects of the new system that I believe are positive, but making sure 2nd period is deliberate and simple is change that we need. As students, much of what we can accomplish is reactionary. I propose that we keep an open, online CGI schedule to inform members of last-minute changes, moderated by EJ and CGI teachers. I really want to push more encompassing reform as well- don’t want to bore you with details here, though!
If you had the power to change one thing about CGI today, what would it be? If I had the power? I’d move it to the first floor, next to the LGI.
Are you in support of the changes made to CGI this year and the “new CGI”? I’m in support of a more informed body. I’m not in support of crazy amounts of extra work and additional, confusing “days”.
What is your opinion on the amount of homework that is assigned in CGI classes? It’s really on par with what’s assigned outside of CGI, but it piles up quickly, and it’s often due on or around the same day.
What clubs or sports are you active in? I’m deeply involved with SVPA. I’ve been a board member for two consecutive years, and I almost single-handedly organized two Battle of the Bands in that time (it’s ok to brag right? I think this is the bragging question.) I’m also active in SVPA’s Tech Crew, Save Darfur Club, Science Olympiad, and Photography Club.
What do you do in your free time? I make mixtapes for my friends, go on drives, draw, and read. Sometimes I take really nice naps! I’m actually also setting up an non-profit with a previous CGI member now living in India, Amala Someshwar, so that consumes some of my downtime.
What is your favorite book, movie and food? My favorite book changes really frequently. Right now, it’s probably Cat’s Cradle. My longtime fave movie is Ghostbusters, and bagels are my favorite all-purpose food.
What is your #1 pet peeve? You know those chair/desk combos? I hate when your pencil falls off the side with the armrest!