A.S. executive vice president candidate Karina Esteban

A.S.+executive+vice+president+candidate+Karina+Esteban

by Nicholas Ebadat, Contributor

Position: Executive Vice President

Name: Karina Esteban

Slate: SDSU Now

Year: Third year

Major: Business Marketing with specialization in Integrated Marketing Communications, minor in Spanish

Why did you decide to run for this position?

“The role of Associated Student’s executive vice president is really about campus life and campus issues, so I think one of the biggest issues right now is mental health; and as someone who personally struggles with mental health, I really understand the importance of accessibility and the awareness of all these mental health resources. I think especially with the COVID-19 pandemic right now, it brought up a lot of mental health issues for people across the student body; so this is really why I am running, to ensure there is further accessibility to these resources. I am also running because as a woman of color, I haven’t really seen a lot of people on campus that look like me in these high leadership positions; so I really want to take that step to inspire other women and especially women of color to apply and run for these leadership positions, and show them that they are qualified to have a seat at the table.”

What makes you qualified for this position? What is your history with A.S.?

“I would say that the executive vice president role really supports internal A.S. and also oversees campus life, so I think my experience of inside and outside of A.S. make me the most qualified for this position. Over my past three years in A.S. I sat on the Aztecs Rock Hunger leadership team, I was on the external relations board, Lobby Corps., community service commission, the first-year leadership initiative, and I am also the current campus community representative and campus safety chair. Outside of A.S., I am a member of Kappa Delta sorority, I am on the Panhellenic Executive Board, and I am on the Dance Marathon leadership team; so I think that through my experiences I really gained a holistic view of campus life and I am truly able to understand student needs which is what I can bring back to the role of Executive Vice President. 

I am a third-year, so I have been in A.S. since my first semester at SDSU. I began with the first-year leadership initiative which is a program where we kind of got to learn the ins-and-outs of A.S. and we were paired with an older member at A.S. and given a mentor. My mentor was actually my slate’s President Ashley Tejada, so we have known each other throughout our entirety here at SDSU which is pretty cool to be able to be in that mentee-mentor relationship and now running together. I also sat on the external relations board as a delegate for campus community, I sat on the lobby corps. as a civic engagement chair, and I also sat on the community service commission. I am currently campus community representative where we also have a subcommittee of campus safety where I chair that. I have been on the Aztec’s Rock Hunger leadership team for the past two years as the social media marketing chair. So that is pretty much my history with A.S. I have seen many different sides to it, so I think that really helps me in this position.”

What would you like to change at SDSU?

“I think that one thing I would want to change is the intentionality behind hiring faculty. I think it is really important that these faculty members are really reflective of students, their identities, and their values because when this happens, students are able to become more successful and are able to relate to those teaching them. In addition, students are able to have more trust in the material that is being presented if it is coming from people with varying identities.”

Can you name something you like and something you dislike about A.S.?

“One thing I really like about A.S. is the diverse opportunities there are for students to get involved. We have academic councils, we have service-based commissions, you can focus on external advocacy, so I think this really provides a platform for students to get involved and give back depending on what they are passionate about. I think one thing I dislike and see some need for improvement is the lack of vibrancy and intention within our programming. I think that A.S. has gotten pretty disconnected from the student body in the virtual environment; so as executive vice president I really want to ensure that A.S. leaders are serving to the best of their abilities because given that, they will be able to better support the rest of our student population.”

What will be your top three priorities in this role?

“As executive vice president I am the chief operating officer, so I really want to stress the urgency behind further accessibility to mental health resources. Throughout the past year, a lot of students including myself have felt so disconnected and it has truly really affected our mental health. I think that mental health is the foundation to be able to be successful in other areas of our lives which is why I want to stress the accessibility through intentional programming and advocating for more resources. I also want to reinvoke campus pride through athletics to create a tighter SDSU community. I think that athletics is something that can bring us all together. Whether you’re on the field or showing up to a tailgate or in the stands with your friends or family, athletics play a huge role in bringing SDSU together; so I really want to bring A.S. programming to athletic events and really bridge the gap between A.S. and athletics which have been neglected traditionally in the past. Finally, I just really want to restructure the culture through A.S. leader programming and training. I really want to ensure members serve the SDSU community to their fullest extent as well as the expectations for student leaders are much higher.”

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