With his Presidency now sadly coming to an end, two term Student Government President Joe Contreras, can only imagine what the future holds for him. Before his term ends, get to know your beloved President with this Q & A and see what his plans are for the future.
Please introduce yourself, where are you from, what’s your major, what’s something that we should know about you?
My name is Joe Contreras. I am from Stockton, CA. I am a current senior at Vanguard University studying communication with an emphasis in technology and emerging media. Along with a minor in theology and journalism. I have been in the student government association for 4 years and 2 years of it I was SGA President.
What is something many students would not know about you?
I am the youngest child out of six and I have been announcing sports since 8th grade. Those are my go-to fun facts.
What was your favorite memory from these past two presidencies?
The number one memory from these past two presidencies was being able to cut the ribbon at the VU100 celebration and Waugh Student Center grand opening.
What is something you’re going to miss the most?
I am going to miss getting to engage with students and getting to know new people while being the voice of the student body.
So I know that Covid-19 put an abruption to your presidency, what would you say helped you with that?
In the Fall of 2020, I formed the Student Government President Network made up of other student government presidents from Southern California Christian private schools such as Biola, Azusa Pacific, Life Pacific, Westmont, and Concordia University Irvine. We gathered periodically to exchange ideas, systems, and methods to increase student advocacy on our respective campus. This support group has helped tremendously in finding new ways to engage with the student body.
What have you learned from your presidency?
I have learned that people do not care about how much you until they know how much you care. I have learned so much about how to lead an organization, manage people, and advocate for students. I have also learned how to create boundaries.
What were some difficulties you came across during both terms of your presidency?
I think one of the biggest difficulties was accurately representing the student body. Always representing the majority and the minority equally. Another difficulty has been getting students to engage with SGA, it is hard to accurately represent the student body when students do not respond to email, attend forums and complete surveys.
What are your plans post-grad?
My initial plans are to take a gap year academically. I am considering career paths in organizational development, education, sports broadcasting, and ministry.
How do you plan to stay connected as a Vanguard alum?
I hope to stay connected with Vanguard through alumni events and opportunities. I will always be a big supporter of Vanguard University.
How did joining the student body help you personally?
If you’re asking about student government specifically, it changed my experience completely. Vanguard was not my dream school so the first week I did not really want to be there but when I ran for freshmen senator and run that transformed my experience. It gave me purpose and helped the transition into the Vanguard community.