Q&A: Hannah Heatherman discusses background, policies, presidential run

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(Logo by Julie Freijat | Collegian Media Group)

Peter Loganbill, Collegian News Editor: “How did you get to the point where you thought, ‘I want to run for student body president’ and what makes you think you are the best person to run for that position?”

Hannah Heatherman, candidate for student body president, speaker of the student senate and senior in finance and organizational management: “When I ran for speaker, I had no idea if I was going to stay for a full fifth year, it wasn’t really on my radar at all because, to me, I just hit what I viewed as the top position in the organization. So, it didn’t matter because I was so invested and am so invested in the legislative branch.

And then over the summer, I went to the Kansas Board of Regents with Jansen [Penny] for the tuition meeting. I remember watching him get up and talk through everything. All of a sudden it hit me, it’s really important that we have somebody who can balance the needs of students and advocating for what they want, but also take their role seriously and understand everything that goes into the mix behind it. I had a call with my SGA mentee, Justin Watkins. I was like, ‘Who do you think’s going to run?’ I told him then ‘I have no interest in running and doing another 40 hours a week for this organization if I don’t think I’m the best person to do it.’ I was like, ‘I’m just going to have to keep my ear to the ground, and if I hear somebody who I think’s good, I won’t do it.

“‘But as long as I think I’m the best person who can show up to do that or show up to all of these meetings, and articulate what the student interest is, then I’m going to continue to run.’ I’ll joke with people that January hit it and I was like, ‘Gosh, dang it, somebody who I think can really do this, are they not coming out yet? Well, here we are. It’s time to do it.’

“I think a huge component of it is experience. I’ve tried to play to that a lot in how I’ve campaigned. I think even more important is the commitment and passion I have for SGA, for the work SGA does for students.

“I’m an organizational management major, right? So, we talk all the time about what human factors impact productivity. It’s just simple, if you love what you do, you’re excited to do it. You work more, you’re willing to stay later. Having that piece to me, having worked so many hours without it ever feeling like I had to work, I think that that stands out between me and Tel [Wittmer].”

Interested in hearing more about Hannah Heatherman’s plans as student body president? Check out the “Collegian Kultivate” podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

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I'm Pete Loganbill and I'm the News Editor for the Collegian and host of the Collegian Kultivate podcast! I spent two years at Johnson County Community College, and I am now a senior in Public Relations at K-State. I believe constant communication leads to progress, no matter how difficult a comment may be for me or anyone to hear. Contact me at ploganbill@kstatecollegian.com.