Hometown: Portland, Ore.
Major: International affairs
Student organizations/activities: Pi Beta Phi, GW Pitches, GW Dance Marathon
Previous SA experience: Student engagement committee, ESIA senator, vice chair of student life committee
Favorite GWorld spot: Beefsteak
Favorite off-campus spot: Nooshi
Dream job: International or human rights lawyer
Fun fact: I was a paid actress once in an original musical.
Favorite place in the world: Prague
Favorite movie: “Inglorious Bastards”
Role model: Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power
Martin, who is currently an undergraduate senator for the Elliott School of International Affairs, said soaking up the SA’s governing documents helped her understand the role of the organization and inspired her to lead next year. If elected as the SA’s next executive vice president, Martin said she will use her knowledge of the bylaws to help incoming senators write legislation and understand SA operations.
“I think legislation is such a powerful medium, when done properly, and the language that you can use can really carry a message and can carry a message with weight,” Martin said.
Martin said she has been involved in some form of student government since she was in the sixth grade. When she arrived at GW, Martin joined the SA’s student engagement committee and worked on a paper-saving campaign with former SA leaders.
This academic year, she picked up projects like People for Periods, a student-run group that distributes feminine hygiene products to some buildings around campus, and led advocacy efforts to change the Colonials nickname. The student body will vote on a referendum this week asking whether the University should choose a new nickname.
As an SA senator, Martin also held and attended listening sessions for underrepresented groups, like the international and black student communities, to better understand the concerns of minority students. She said having her hands in a multitude of SA projects and initiatives helped shape her platform, where she outlined goals to implement diversity training for student organizations and grow People for Periods into a University-run initiative.
“I want to keep working,” Martin said. “That’s really the reason I decided to run for EVP is because I’m not done working yet. I’m not done working for the students.”
Martin said she also wants to publicize Title IX and sexual assault prevention resources to ensure students know what help is available to them at the University. The senate passed legislation Monday calling on the Center for Student Engagement to implement Title IX training for student organizations next year as one of five required Excellence in Leadership seminars.
If elected, Martin said she also wants to train members of the diversity and inclusion assembly to conduct diversity training for student organizations. She said student leaders have expressed interest in participating in a diversity training but were concerned that there may not be enough trained staff to conduct the training for every student group.
“They would go through comprehensive training,” Martin said. “Then, student organizations would be able to come to the Student Association and ask for peer educators to go out to their organizations to lead conversations on different topics.”
Martin said she has been “beyond frustrated” with the SA Senate over the past year because few pieces of legislation have been passed, and senators often do not fully grasp the organization’s procedures, like finding a proxy for meetings or writing legislation. As a result, only a few senators with institutional knowledge launch projects, she said.
If elected, Martin said she wants to better educate senators about SA procedures and create a report for the student body on the senate’s progress once every semester.
“I just have so many thoughts in terms of ways that we can better equip members of the SA and members of our community as a whole with the tools that they need to get the things done,” she said.