Hometown: Stillwater, Oklahoma
Major: Public Communications
Student organizations/activities: Hatchet photographer, member and executive council member for the Sigma Kappa sorority, GW Orientation Leader, STAR GWU Tour Guide, First Ladies Dance Team and GW George
SA experience: First-year senator; U-at-Large senator; chair of the student life committee; member of the governance and nominations committee, the women’s caucus, the committee of faculty and students and the interfaith taskforce
Favorite quarantine activity: Hanging out with my friends on Zoom and playing “Just Dance”
First place you will go after the pandemic is no longer a concern: Going to The Anthem concert hall
Show you are currently binge-watching: “iCarly” and “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”
Favorite restaurant in the District: Ted’s Bulletin, Tonic and Jetty’s
Favorite outdoor activity: Spikeball, football and dancing with my friends
Favorite place in the world: Inside the Washington Monument
Who is your role model: My grandmother
Proudest GW moment: Sponsoring the River Horse Protection Policy as a first-year senator and performing as GW George, the University mascot, at the gymnastics team’s senior night
Something you cannot live without: My backpack
What would your walk-up song be: “More than a Woman” by the Bee Gees
Kate Carpenter knew on March 13 of last year that “things were going to change forever.”
When she stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial at 11:12 p.m. with 400 to 500 students “just sitting there,” she said she knew GW was her family. Students were sent home in mid-March after the rise of the coronavirus led to virtual learning for the remainder of the semester and the next academic year.
“I didn’t even know everyone there, and I knew that we were there together, no matter what happened in the future,” Carpenter said. “GW was going to be there for each other.”
Carpenter, who is running for Student Association vice president, said through her experiences in the SA, she has seen not only the inner workings but also the “shortcomings” of the body, making her a qualified candidate for a top leadership spot.
“I have seen the internal conflict, and I have seen the things that we have failed at, and I recognize those, and I am ready to improve upon them,” she said.
Carpenter said there is “petty student politics” in the SA that have inhibited the body from advocating on behalf of students.
She said her platform outlines plans to build community and resolve the “internal divide” in the group by facilitating “hang-out times” for SA members to increase community and bonds.
Carpenter said she’s noticed a lack of school spirit in the SA, which needs to be a “beacon and leader” for passion for the University. She said SA members currently do not attend and support enough University athletic events, like basketball and soccer games, which she said she wants to encourage members to take a larger part in.
“We need to be there as advocates for GW school spirit, and that is something that we just haven’t done in most recent years,” Carpenter said.
She said the SA needs to be approachable to build a better relationship with the student body through more casual conversations and updates on SA initiatives to increase transparency. She said student government can play an “important” role in the community if the SA creates an environment for them to be effective advocates for students.
“We can be advocates for the student body, we can be approachable, we can be a beacon for school spirit, and we can erase the internal conflicts that come with us evaluating the shortcomings,” she said.
This article appeared in the March 29, 2021 issue of the Hatchet.