Oballa Oballa, President

Oballa Oballa

Campus: Riverland Community College-Austin

Why are you running for this position?

I am running for LeadMN President because I am still hungry for change. We have worked really hard starting from scratch to address food insecurity that is affecting our student and we have accomplished a lot of things in that short period of time, but we still have more to do to makes sure every one of our campus has food pantry or food shelf. Through our hard work and sharing our personal stories around food insecurity many of our students came forward and shared what they been hiding for long time.

We still have more work to do and bring changes to our two-year and technical college. I want to make sure our students voices are heard and that the Governor and our State understands the importance of education at two-year colleges and what students need to be successful.

Our politicians are no longer considering the importance of affordable education and that is why tuition at two-year colleges continues to increase and I am ready to lead the fight and tell them what we need to be successful and tell them we are still hungry for any change.

My name is Oballa Oballa; I was born in Ethiopia and grew up in Kenya. I moved to the United States with my family in December 2013 as refugees in search of a better life and opportunities. But who is Oballa Oballa? I describe myself as ambitious, compassionate generous, passionate, persistent, and funny. I call myself ambitious because I have big dreams for my future and since I move to America, I have never stopped working hard to reach my dreams. I am compassionate about the pain that our students are going through, and this is the reason that I am passionate and working very hard to end hunger on our campuses. I am very active on my campus and within the community. I speak four languages; Anyuak, Arabic, English, and Swahili. During my free time, I enjoy going on road trips, playing soccer, cooking traditional food and perform standup comedy. I am currently serving as the Vice President of LeadMN and I would like to continue advocating for students and fighting for their rights.

Priscilla Mayowa, Vice President

Priscilla Mayowa

Campus: North Hennepin Community College

Why are you running for this position?

I am running for this position to ensure continuity of the work of the past cabinets as well as introducing new ideas. I enjoy advocacy and legislative work immensely, two important element of the position. I'm also running because this is a great opportunity for me to grow myself.

I love the work of advocacy and want to do more and learn how to do more. I also love to create, strategize and implement, skills that this position will put to use.

I have a very strong voice that is able to articulate issues as well as appropriately convey messages. An ability that is important for a position like this that involves testifying before legislators. Finally and most importantly, I'm running because I care deeply about issues that affect college student such as high cost of tuition and inadequate support for higher ed from the government, rising cost of textbooks and tools, food insecurity, homelessness and other various barriers that help to create an achievement gap.

My name is Priscilla and I'm the legislative coordinator for my student senate as well as the Advocacy Workgroup co-leader. I'm also Platform Committee representative for the Metro West region.This will be my second year on senate as well as first year on the Platform Committee. When i'm not working on Senate or LeadMN business, I enjoy reading, writing, cooking, watching TV (mostly animated), sleeping or working on my shared podcast. In the summer I do engage in a lot more activities such as visiting art spaces and museums, hiking, going to different farmers markets, volunteering in the children's department of my church etc. I'm friendly, fun and you'll usually find me engaged in an interesting conversation.

Liz Bloch, Public Relations Coordinator

Liz Bloch

Campus: Mesabi Range College-Virginia

Why are you running for this position?

I love working with people! It has been amazing meeting student leaders from around the state through LeadMN. Supporting these students in achieving their goals of improving their campus communities and laying the foundation for affordable education is exactly what I am passionate about. Furthermore, as PRC, I want to ensure our efforts do not go unnoticed. Our victories will be loud, made public for our communities to observe. This will not only win LeadMN and community college students supporters across MN but will show the amazing power of organization and teamwork. This hope will ripple out to our hometowns, inspire others to help us or focus on their own initiatives, and little by little, we will create one vibrant, healthy, prosperous, educated MN.

My name is Liz Bloch and I am a sophomore at Mesabi Range College- Virginia Campus. Because I waited five years to be able to afford college, I can’t quite wrap my head around how lucky I am to be able to receive such an incredible education. This waiting period has fueled my passion to create a system where everyone has access to affordable education.

I want to experience every aspect of college life fully, so you can find me working with students and faculty as our campus’s Student Senate President, LeadMN’s Platform Committee Member-at-Large, student representative on MnState's Academic Affairs Council, and as a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, MRC Diversity Committee, and MRC Student Life Budget Committee.

Professionally, I am a librarian for Eveleth Public Library where I get to meet many members of the community and plan programs that bring people together to learn, socialize, and have fun. My social hobbies include playing Dungeons and Dragons tabletop roleplaying game, relaxing to symphonic metal, and baking my favorite food-cheesecake. I’m running for Public Relations Coordinator because I believe in the power of people, working as one, to create positive change.

Britta Sather, Treasurer

Britta Sather

Campus: Minnesota State Community and Technical College-Moorhead

Why are you running for this position?

I tell this story time after time. I was sick during my first GA, but from where I was still there to listen and learn; it put a fire under me. At the point I was questioning why I joined Student Senate, and I realized it there. I care so much, but I don't know how to use my voice. I want to be someone who can put that fire into others.

As others joke, my name is little the water filter Brita, but let me know you I am better than the filter. I don't want students thoughts and feeling to be filtered. As students we need to be heard. I feel like I hear that they will never know if they don't hear, but sometimes that's not good enough. You need keep pushing to let them know we are frustrated.

I believe my skill set is best used within the Treasurer. I feel I will be able to do everything the job entails. Once I go into something, I do it 110%.

My name is Britta Sather. As a child I lived with my brother and my mom. Being raising my a single parent is hard, and now being older understand why we moved from Minnesota to North Dakota when I was young. I am happy to say I went back to Minnesota to expand my horizons.

In high school, I was heavy involved in Theater Arts, but was fine with my voice being drowned out. I was the quite kid in the corner; thinking nothing I believe could ever change. I am happy now I realize that the voice is a powerful thing. I don't have to just sneak unjust issues into my stories.

As someone who loves writing I thrive off ideas. You may think you have this best solution, but when you talk to someone you come up with a even better idea. Other than writing I love anime, personality tests (mainly Myers Briggs), and hanging out with my cat with many names.