Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing two guys on my floor, Preet Christian and Noah Love, about Biola’s Student Government Association and Student Missionary Union. Both of these gentlemen are first year students here at Biola. Preet was involved with SMU earlier this first semester and continues to want to be involved. Noah is running for our building’s senator position and is currently going through the campaign process.
Before the interviews, I would like to clarify that SGA is our school’s student-led government. Think of it like your friends in high school running for class president, but on a much bigger scale. Their goal is to “advocate for you, the students, by advancing your voices in order to influence positive change.” They take proposals and listen to student body to ultimately make suitable changes.
As for SMU, it is the largest student-led missions organization in the United States where they “desire[s] to engage in the conversation of racial reconciliation and diversity inclusion as an integral part of motivating and mobilizing the student body.” SMU engages in many different types of work whether it be in the inner city or a completely different country. You can even apply to lead a specific trip if you think God has led you to do so!
But now, here is the short interview I had with Noah, a freshman who is running for Hart senator, about SGA:
M: First and foremost, how did you hear about SGA and when you did hear about it, did you know what it entailed?
N: I first heard about SGA from the newsletters around Hart and talking to Renee who is the current Hart senator. She introduced herself to me and just explained the role of senator.
M: You said you saw and heard about SGA through newsletters. What enticed you to it?
N: I think, honestly, it was a lot of people around me encouraging me to do it and who said I would be good at it. They said that it would be a good fit for me. And then, you know, I just thought it would be great to try something new and exciting because I have never been a part of any sort of student government leadership before. I thought it would be really fun to participate in that.
M: In high school, you were not involved in any type of student government?
N: Yeah, so I definitely did a lot of student leadership and spiritual development. Stuff like that, but never any government. Correct.
M: Do you think that is necessary, or to have pre-existing SGA work or any type of student government work before wanting to join SGA?
N: I definitely don’t think there is a prerequisite of like, work in student government or experience with government of any kind. I mean, I don’t have that. Leadership, yes, but student government, no. I think SGA is just a great thing; it’s gonna be a fun experience and I’m really looking forward to it. I think it’s just a good thing to do in college, to spread your wings and try different things and, yeah, I’m really looking forward to it.
M: Is SGA a separate ambition from your actual major?
N: Yeah, so my major is Psychology. No plans for politics or any sort of political participation in the future, you know, for my career and such. Yeah, it’s more like an outside thing unrelated to that.
I also interviewed with Preet Christian, an SMU member:
M: How did you hear about SMU?
P: I was just looking through clubs and said “hey, I really wanna do this.” I really love missions, so at the [club] fair I signed up for SMU.
M: Why did you decide to do it? What enticed you to do SMU? Any specific moments when researching SMU or anything like that, that drew your attention? Maybe a specific trip?
P: So, there is a SMU info night and there [are] local missions and global missions. I really wanted to do global missions but I think it was too early.
M: What is your future with SMU? Such as, are you thinking about trying to do more global missions or more local missions? Anything to say about those two fields? And my last question would be what advice would you give to a prospective student who is thinking about SMU? I guess that is more than two questions.
P: I actually applied for a global trip this summer, and I wanna do more global trips. I’m planning, or hopefully, wanna become a leader for a trip. But, any advice about SMU I could give to a prospective student, um, just really pray about being a member of a local team or a global team because it does take a lot to work with SMU and to really just use your faith to speak to other people.