Updated: Monday, March 29 at 6:07 p.m.
Hometown: The Woodlands, Texas
Major: Cognitive Neuroscience and Psychology
Student organizations/activities: Transgender and Non-binary Students of GW, Allied in Pride, Sunrise GW, GW Young Democratic Socialists of America
SA experience: CCAS senator, member of five committees and one task force, vice chair of the student life committee, the chair of the LGBTQ+ caucus
Favorite quarantine activity: Having time to spend with friends
First place you will go after the pandemic is no longer a concern: Visit my grandparents in Maryland
Show you are currently binge-watching: “Legend of Korra”
Favorite restaurant in the District: Toryumon Japanese House
Favorite outdoor activity: Picnics
Favorite place in the world: Washington, D.C.
Who is your role model: Sarah McBride, a democratic member of the Delaware Senate and the first openly transgender state senator in the country
Proudest GW moment: When we found out that the Board of Trustees had voted to divest from fossil fuels. It was a big celebration within Sunrise, and we were all super proud.
Something you can’t live without: Chocolate
What would your walk-up song be: “American Idiot” by Green Day
Sofia Packer never thought she’d get involved in student politics.
Three years later, she is running for Student Association vice president.
Packer, who announced her candidacy late last month, said she is running on four main pillars – transparency, graduate student inclusion, a back to campus policy and equity and accessibility. She said if elected, she would focus on ensuring officials discuss decisions with students, faculty and staff before they are finalized.
“I would be the best choice because I know what it’s like to be on the outside, to look at on campus politics and not know what’s going on, to think that the SA is an ineffective, do-nothing body, but I also have the knowledge of somebody who’s worked within the system,” she said.
Packer said GW needs leaders “ready and able” to work with administrators to bring students back to campus in the fall. She said as vice president, she would collaborate with officials to create a “concrete idea” for bringing as many students back to campus “as soon as possible.”
“I think having SA leadership who is ready to take on that responsibility early is really important,” she said.
She said administrators need to grow the diversity of GW’s faculty community, and she hopes to urge officials to enact a proposed cluster hire – an initiative to hire 18 minority faculty members primarily in the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences. Packer said she wants to increase and promote diversity on campus through increasing “physical and mental” accommodations for students who need them.
She said she is the best choice for vice president because she knows what it’s like to be on the “outside” of the SA. She said her involvement in many student organizations in addition to the SA can help serve as a bridge between the body and students at large.
“I have the knowledge to take the concerns of the student body and really translate them into actual policy change,” Packer said. “I haven’t lost those connections to the student body, to the activist communities, to the various identity groups, and I think that being that bridge is a very important role for the vice president.”
This post was updated to reflect the following correction:
The Hatchet misspelled Packer’s name in a previous version of this story. Her name has been updated. We regret this error.