Student-Elected Trustee Candidate Profiles - Fall 2020
Degree Seeking: MBA
My top three priorities for this role would be to (1) support efforts in maintaining the health and safety of the Cornell community and wider Ithaca community in any possible (2) continue to educate the Cornell community on the importance of diversity and inclusion and (3) dissect Cornell's rankings for the college and graduate programs and suggest changes that can be made to improve Cornell's position and reputation at large.
I will use my position to improve Cornell by surveying the student body to get a sense of their main concerns and the things the university is doing. In accordance with COVID guidelines, I will conduct this survey via email outreach and posters with QR codes. I will also reach out to direct to club and student organization's leadership to get a sense of what they are hearing from their constituents. After compiling and synthesizing my findings I will make a presentation to the Board with actionable steps that can be taken to address any major themes.
In the past, I served as Philanthropy Chair, Treasurer, and President of the National Association of Black Accountants at DePaul University. At IBM, I served as the co-chair of the Chicago Black Network Group. I served on an internal advisory board with Lululemon to address diversity and inclusion in their retail stores.
I have an interest in impact investing, diversity and inclusion, and experiential learning. I think serving on the board will give me the opportunity to learn a bit more about how an institution like Cornell does its part to develop future leaders who conscious of the impact they can have on the world and their communities.
Degree Seeking: Master's
As the graduate and professional student elected trustee, I would work relentlessly to foster a campus community in which every student can succeed regardless of socioeconomic status, race or ethnicity, religion, sexuality, gender, or any other salient identities that can lead to marginalization or oppression. My top three priorities would be as follows: EQUITY: I want to fight to make Cornell a more equitable University by establishing an anti-racism institution to address how systemic and institutionalized issues permeate our campus, create a University-wide initiative for free menstrual products for EVERYONE who menstruates, and increasing the representation of BIPOC across all academic and professional departments. ACCESSIBILITY: I want to foster a more accessible Cornell community by increasing investments in Student Disability Services and expanding access to mental health resources for all members of the community. ACCOUNTABILITY: I want to institute a means for holding the University accountable for promises it has made to the community such as divesting from fossil fuels, increasing sexual violence prevention resources, and providing great financial assistance for FGLI students.
- President - Gender Justice Advocacy Coalition (2019-2020)
- Free the Tampon - Initiative Coordinator (2018-2020)
- Vice President of Outreach - Consent Ed (2018-2019)
- Cornell Social Consultant (2017-2020)
- Manager - Big Red Shuttle (2017-2020)
Growing up, my mother always taught me to leave every room better than I found it. During my undergraduate career, I had the honor and privilege of serving the Cornell community alongside various student organizations and leaders in hopes of creating a more equitable, accessible, and accountable University. Because of my various marginalized identities, it has become my passion to advocate for those who have been traditionally silenced and underrepresented by society. As Cori Bush says, I am the people I fight for.
Degree Seeking: Master's.
Having attended Cornell University as an undergraduate, and now as a graduate student at Cornell Tech, I am deeply aware of all things Cornell. As the graduate student-elect trustee, I will focus on these issues with the board of trustees:
1. A TUITION FREEZE FOR THE 2021-2022 ACADEMIC YEAR
2. END THE PROCESS OF STUDENTS REPORTING OTHER STUDENTS IF THEY DO NOT ABIDE BY THE CORNELL COVID-19 BEHAVIORAL COMPACT
3. PROVIDE MENTAL HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS TO STUDENTS OUTSIDE NY STATE
I am running for trustee because during this unprecedented time of COVID-19, the university can and should do more for the student body. With classes virtual and many students unable to use the full resources of Cornell, the university should commit to a tuition freeze. For graduate students teaching virtual classes, they should be provided by the University work-from-home resources. Additionally, reporting and monitoring should be done by campus administration and not by students policing each other. We should be encouraging a CULTURE OF OPENNESS AND INCLUSION; policing each other creates an unhealthy social atmosphere on campus among fellow students. Furthermore, all students need mental health resources now more than ever with Zoom fatigue and our virtual format.
As trustee, I would specifically advocate to make the student experience as optimal as possible. Learn more about my initiatives and experience at https://www.vincehartman.com
- Cornell Senior Class President – Started the Cornell to Syracuse Bus Program during breaks. Expanded the Activity Fee for a larger Convocation budget.
- Cornell Student Assembly Representative – Instituted Gender-Neutral Living in Residential Dorms. Implemented direct election of the President and Vice President positions. Secured deferment of Cornell loans for students who participate in volunteer programs such as Peace Corps and Teach for America.
- Cornell Tech Student Government Executive Board – Coordinating social virtual events to foster Cornell spirit.
- Product Manager – I have strong leadership skills having worked as a healthcare manager for the past 8 years.
● I love Cornell – and my primary motivation has always been to give back that passion to other Cornellians. And more so, to advocate for students’ opinions to the administration ● I’m very interested in ensuring that students have great jobs after graduation, and connecting our community to the robust alumni network available. We need more emphasis on job placement during COVID-19. ● Additionally, I feel students should be treated equally - especially our international community. Many graduate students are international; and as a graduate student, I believe Cornell should continue to fight the federal government against visa renewal restrictions.
Degree Seeking: Ph.D.
It remains essential that the University continues to invest in its students, especially now in the midst of a pandemic and ongoing concerns about racial justice. As your Student-Elected Trustee, I would focus on these priorities::
1. Healthy, Safety & Wellbeing: Continuation and expansion of the COVID-19 Access Fund, establishment of off-campus testing sites, improved coverage & access to physical and mental health services (in-person & online), adoption of a universal one-year extension in research funding, and expansion on the TA sick leave policy.
2. Equity & Accessibility: Expanded financial support and policy reform for on-campus and off-campus housing, increased financial aid & services for low-income / first-generation students, improved infrastructure & student support for disability access across campus, investment in child-care grants and services for families, creation of a peer-based "safe walk" service across campus, and free menstrual products across campus.
3. Inclusion: Increased funding and logistical support for the Anti-Racism Center and campus resource centers, adoption of campus-wide anti-racism and bias training for all community members, creation of a centralized support center for victims of bias and discrimination, active engagement & collaboration with student organizations and resource groups, increased access and dialogue between Cornell community and BoT, and investment into immersion programming for international & transfer students.
I have spent the past three years working to promote a "campus for everyone" in collaboration with my fellow student leaders, faculty, staff and Cornell administration. During my time on the Cornell Reopening Committees, University Assembly, and Graduate & Professional Student Assembly, I pushed forward policies aimed towards representing student sentiments and improving student wellbeing including:
- Increased support and protections for graduate student needs during reactivation of research & teaching
- Divestment from fossil fuel companies
- Implementation of campus circulator transit system
- Increased investment and accessibility of current mental health services and resources
- Increased infrastructure and accessibility of on-campus child care facilities
- Grade & Professional Student Representative, Committee on Research & Operations Reactivation
- Vice-Chair of Internal Operations, University Assembly Executive Board
- Graduate & Professional Student Representative, University Assembly
One of my major goals is to be a bridge between student communities and the Board of Trustees. As someone who is eager to collaborate with relevant groups on campus-wide initiatives, I want to work with others to help tackle concerns that impact everyone at Cornell, including:
- Improved accessibility of university services and resources, in particular academic advising, career services, and student life for all students (undergraduate, graduate and professional);
- Development strategies towards Cornell's carbon neutrality and sustainability goals, including financial transparency in university investments and sustainable improvements in infrastructure and technology;
- De-emphasis of standardized tests (SAT/ACT, GRE/GMAT, LSAT) in the admission process for all Cornell programs;
- Increasing partnerships both locally and abroad for student work and study opportunities, especially for underrepresented students;
- Advocacy towards "livable" stipends for graduate students.