Sierra Blanchard-Hodge is Xavier University of Louisiana’s busy and focused Student Government Association president. “The purpose of SGA is to make sure student concerns are channeled to the right people. We are the liaisons to the students and administrators,” said Blanchard. While attending Xavier, Blanchard had multiple experiences around the campus, which she says prepared her for her leadership position now.
During her freshman year she was not too involved; she wanted to make sure she was in the right environment. When she was finally reassured, Blanchard joined XULEADS , which assisted in her becoming active in class and organizations. Starting with emergent leaders and advanced leaders in the beginning helped make everything easier, such as learning how things work to building relationships with the administration, she said. By her sophomore year, she was elected class president. “It was nice. It gave me the opportunity to lead a class and also be over an executive board; but being junior class senator gave me the money perspective,” said Blanchard.
Now, as president of SGA, the duties and responsibilities have increased, as this year is the first year SGA members are sitting on a committee on the board of trustees. Being accountable for almost everything, Blanchard has to make sure to always be on task to plan great things for students while also attending Xavier.
Blanchard has completed many jobs, even the things the students don’t notice, such as accessible handicap transportation. She has made sure, and is still making sure, that all student concerns are visible and heard. Advancements have been made in being receptive to students, knowing the SGA members are being more responsive with concerns and solutions.
“Just making sure my administrators and next year’s administrators continue to take student concerns to the right place, that is very important,” Blanchard said. “Also because this [U.S.] election was so unexpected we have to make sure we know where our campus stands and where WE stand in that.”
Prioritizing SGA in a daily life is a job itself. Set days for office hours have now turned into an everyday thing. Blanchard wears many hats: Political Science major, XU Cheer coach, SGA President, and maintaining a personal life. The key to it is her balancing her days, scheduling everything in different categories. The love for the university and students makes the longer days not as bad.
Blanchard would never tell people outside the campus she was president. “I don’t like to brag because the reaction,” Blanchard said Her favorite thing as president is being in a position where she can listen to the students. Not for the popularity but to be there for the people. “I run Xavier like a little country.”
“Its crazy it’s the second week of February, so I’m realizing my time is almost up,” said Blanchard