Candidate One

Nicholas Gertner

Campus: Anoka Ramsey Community College-Cambridge
Elected office running for: Treasurer

I started my college journey at Anoka-Ramsey community college. I didn’t know why I wanted to do at first. I was undecided between engineering and business. After about two years of studying engineering and completing my AA degree; I decided engineering wasn’t right for me. I found out about Senate through a friend and started attending meetings and really started developing a passion for it. I kept expanding my involvement and learned how to advocate for students and want to continue my work and grow my involvement with LeadMN.

1. What degree or certificate program are you seeking?
I am majoring in Business Management and Finance. I plan on transferring to St. Cloud State to complete my bachelors.

2. What are your future career plans?
After graduating, I plan on working as a Financial/Business Analyst and work for a company or work at a consulting firm and work with a variety of businesses. I also want to keep working with higher education and continue to fix the issues students face.

3. Please describe your previous student government or professional experience, and how it has prepared you for this position.
Currently, I am Metro North’s Governing Council Representative and am the Treasurer on my Senate. I have been in Senate and with LeadMN for about three years. I have learned a lot in my time of the problem’s students face and how to advocate for students. I have stood up for students at my school when college administration wasn’t following policy and not hearing students’ voices. Through my continuous learning and apply what I know, have developed me into a great leader and has prepared me for Treasurer.

4. Why are you running for this position?
I am running because I see the issues in Higher Education, and I want to start fixing the problems. I’ve seen students struggling, myself included, and want to fix the issues in higher education so other students don’t have to go through the same problems and struggles myself and fellow students have gone through.

5. What challenges do you see facing Minnesota's community and technical college students?
I see many challenges faced by Minnesota’s community and technical students. Some challenges and problems I see are college affordability, food insecurity, mental health, textbook costs, retention, and student involvement in college decisions. College is becoming less and less affordable as the years go on. We need to start investing in our community and technical colleges to give us the resources we need to accomplish our dreams of graduating and not be thousands of dollars in debt. I see the lack of mental health awareness and resources on our colleges, and we need to make a difference to raise awareness and get the resources students need. We need to make sure students voices are being heard at our colleges and at Minnesota State. I want to review and make changes to Minnesota State policies to make sure students voices are represented and colleges start following the policies they should, so students aren’t shut out by college administration.

Nicholas Gertner headshot

Candidate Two

Britta Sather

Campus: Minnesota State Community and Technical College-Moorhead
Elected office running for: Treasurer

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.

1. What degree or certificate program are you seeking?
I am currently seeking a A.A.S degree in Human Resources at Minnesota Community and Technical College, Moorhead. I do hope to go for a Bachelors degree, probably into Business, but I have no yet chosen which degree. I know from speaking with my advisor, and I agree, it's better to diversify.

2. What are your future career plans?
I have yet to pick between the two, but I would love to be a Human Resource Manager or help train and develop. I love figuring out how people think and feel; how they can use those into something they love.

3. Please describe your previous student government or professional experience, and how it has prepared you for this position.
I am the current Treasure of the M-State Moorhead campus, along with Amine-zing. Even with Anime-zing being more a low-key one, I believe both of them have helped me getting prepared for something bigger. I have always been interested in where my organizations have been sitting. In my Student Human Resource Organization (SHRO) as Vice President, I know I have asked our advisor for budget because no student formally does it. I like to think that because of this it's the reason I don't have to ask as much about it. I felt in the dark not knowing where we were sitting, but I don't need to worry about that anymore. Stepping away from the math side of this, I am the current Steering Committee chair, so I have been learning how to better run a efficient meeting.

4. 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 Treasure. I feel I will be able to do everything the job entails. Once I go into something, I do it 110%.

5. What challenges do you see facing Minnesota's community and technical college students?
There are so many things that students are facing today. It's so hard to just focus on just a few when the issues are so massive, but I have been able to narrow it down to a few.

We are still struggling with affordability. I was to focus on the debt free college, and trying to fix our state grant system. It is not fair to our students they get the least amount of money, when we have the most need.

The next is mental health. As someone who has depression and anxiety it is something near and dear to my heart. I am guilty of this as well, but so many students ignore help because of the stigma. It will not be an easy thing to end the stigma, but we can try and make it better. If schools do not have the councilors or social workers, it would be helpful to get have both community and online alternatives.

Like I have said before, there are so many different ones, so even though this next one is my final one written,  it will not stop be for fighting for other issues. I want to be able to support PSEO students, and help them not looked down upon their high school. There is nothing wrong with students wanting to better themselves even before they are out of high school. I'm proud of everyone young and old who choose to further their education.

Britta Sather headshot