ASGC President Priscilla Ahmed Shares Knowledge and Dreamsby on Sep 9, 2016
Launching this new school year, student body President Priscilla Ahmed plans to unite students around events and activities as well as bring new ideas to Gavilan College.
ASGC President Priscilla Ahmed in the student government
office with the new sign created by Gavilan art students.
Leadership skills grow when running for office
Last year Ahmed accepted the Associated Students of Gavilan College (ASGC) vice president of clubs position after a semester in student government. When the previous president graduated in the fall of 2014, she decided to run for the vacated office.
"When I ran for president the first time, students had a lot of questions, like what are your plans for Gavilan, why should I vote for you," she said, which she found intimidating. She felt comfortable exploring her options with her counselor, Blanca Arteaga, who was also the ASGC advisor. Drawing on last year's experience prepared her to run for reelection.
Responding to student questions during the second campaign, Ahmed said, "I let them know I am very student-oriented. I am knowledgeable about a lot of programs and services Gavilan has to offer, and I am determined to share."
ASGC offers programs and assistance
ASGC offers card-holding members many services, including textbook scholarships, annual scholarships, free admission to Gavilan athletic events, free scantrons and greenbooks and discounts at selected area businesses. A complete description of ASGC is available on their new web page.
For students who applied for the $200 textbook scholarships, "The past three semesters, every qualified student who applied has been awarded one," Ahmed said.
New ideas: exploring campus housing and unified grading systems
While attending student government conferences, she said, "I have noticed there are a lot of homeless college students throughout the state." Ahmed wants to pursue campus housing for Gavilan students, a long-range plan. She believes it will improve the campus atmosphere, allowing more student involvement for tutoring and extracurricular activities.
"I am hoping to present a resolution to propose a unilateral grading system for all California community colleges," she said, which she views as a benefit to students trying to transfer. She plans to sponsor this as a resolution at the Student Senate for California Community Colleges. Currently some colleges have a straight (A, B, C, D, F) grading system, while others have a weighted grading system (A, A-, B+, B, B-, etc.).
"With one grading system, it could essentially level out the playing field," she said.
Career goals grow with campus involvement
Ahmed, who graduated in May with an AA-T degree in Administration of Justice, is starting her third academic year at Gavilan. The experiences working in student government helped formulate her future career goals.
"Since getting involved in student government and participating more in campus activities and services, I decided I would love to work at Gavilan!" she said. She is now pursuing an AA-T degree in communications, with plans to transfer to UC Santa Cruz or San José State University. "My career goal is to return to Gavilan as an instructor or an administrator after completing my higher education."
Student leader finds inspiration
"What motivates me and drives me are my three beautiful children: Kaliyah, 7, Andrea, 5, and Jesse, 3," said Ahmed. "I love talking to them about how important school is." And the talk becomes the walk, inspiring her children. "My seven-year-old already talks about how she will go to college some day, just like her mommy."