The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Cade Coppinger, finance junior

What is your Aggie story? 

My Aggie story stems from my grandfather, he was Class of [1955.] I just remember vividly getting to hear from him as I grew up what A&M meant to him, and so didn't grow up with a ton of other Aggies in my family, but he really left an impact on me. I saw the value in what A&M is and what the traditions and just the Aggie experience means to students. That's been a big part of my story. When it came down to senior year, I really was attracted to the community and the type of people that were at A&M. Still, I've just been blown away for the experience that I've had here in College Station.

What organizations are you involved with?

I'm involved with Brotherhood of Christian Aggies. I served on the exec board with them. Love being in Maroon Coats as well. I'm still currently involved in [the] Student Government Association right now as the chief of staff.

Why are you running for student body president, and why do you think you’re qualified for this position?  

A big reason why I want to run for student body president was because I really early on identified in college that I wanted to find a place that I found outside of SGA. I found that within my men's org, but then I also thought that I was like, I realized there [were] the social circles in these groups that existed at A&M. I really wanted to find an opportunity to really get plugged in outside of that. I thought SGA was a really good way of that. It didn't fall under one social sphere, one group, but it really represents the entire student body. I think serving as student body president, kind of as I came into freshman year identified that as one of my missions to get involved in outside of it SGA served that for me, and I'm just seeing the potential that it has, and that I continue to have. I think in the role of SBP, I could really find ways to unify the student body and try and serve and advocate on behalf of students to admin and continually invest back into this place, it has given me so much. I feel like the things that kind of made me qualified, are just that I have experience outside of SGA, and serving in leadership, just being vice president and my men's work right now, but then also have gotten to see the past three student body presidents, I've been on their cabinet and been underneath them. I've seen some things that have worked. I've just feel like I've really gotten to learn from them and their investment in me, and I really am excited at the prospect of potentially serving in this role.

What is your campaign platform?

I just feel like for me, I'm extremely passionate about students. I feel like because of my expertise outside of SGA, and getting to see what student experience has been like, and other student organizations and feeling what that's like, but then also having experience on the inside of SGA, it really gives me a unique perspective on the way that I feel like I can understand, “Hey, these are tangible goals and things that we can really further and accomplish.” But I also feel like the outside experience has given me a little bit of an eye to see some things that can improve. I also know that listening is going to be a huge part of my job and is the thing that I want to emphasize the most as we move forward in SGA. That's something that I'm really eager to bring to the table.

My platform points are kind of broken up into different categories. My first one is unifying campus leaders. I really think that if we can get semesterly events gathered together within SGA, where we have campus leaders coming from all different sides of campus — whether it be Corps, IFC, CPC, engineering, cultural organizations — I think if we can get all these people together at least once a semester, they can collaborate with one another, bounce ideas. I think we could see a lot of opportunity for organizations to work together and unify these social spheres that I was kind of talking about earlier behind my why, but then also really giving SGA an opportunity to say, “Hey, if you ever need anything, please contact us.”

I think that would really give the university and SGA a really good opportunity to work together and that way we can be better listeners. I also am extremely passionate about enhancing the student experience. I really feel like that looks like in a few ways at Digital IDs, working on seeing if we can work on parking progress. I think that's one area that we can really improve upon. But then also for Scantrons, and we were so close. We had free Scantrons for like a week. I know we had some changes in the provost, but I really feel like that's something that we can work together at with admin and make happen. 

But then also with the digital IDs, I know I kind of have talked about it on my platform a lot within the role of student body president, I really can't make any promises because there is no direct power. I really feel like I can advocate and come in the room and say, “Hey, can we get a three to five-year plan, or at least create a backup plan of having a virtual ID instead of a physical ID?” That's one area I really am passionate about. 

Then thirdly, international students. Seven thousand international students on campus. I've been hearing from a lot of them it takes 15 business days, on average, to get paperwork back that's critical for their experience, whether they're going to work or travel or anything of that sort. I think if we could just really work with admin on trying to bolster up support and ISS, but then increase communication with them and just be an advocate support group for that community, something that I'm really passionate about. 

Then lastly, the area I got to focus on as being vice president of External Relations, the past two years working with other schools, such as Prairie View A&M. We have an exchange program that I've been working on for the past year or so. I think that we can really see progress moving forward with that. Then also just doing food drives with other SEC schools and things of that sort. 

Then lastly, one area that I really think we can improve is trying to see if we can use the dining dollars that transition after every year, they, I think if we could really use that and dedicate that towards the 12th Can or either food insecurity scholarships. We as students can practice the gift of giving, but then also really invest back into the Aggies who just need some more support. So that's kind of my platform and a few things I'm passionate about.

Campaign slogan

Choose Cade.

Why do you think students should vote for you? 

I feel like students should vote for me just because I want to be the best listener. I am not going to make the promise that I want to be walking in the room and be the main voice. I think I want to gather and listen from all 70,000-74,000 students that make up this campus. I'm gonna continue to advocate for them to the best of my ability and walk into the room with admin with humility. Just knowing that SGA is serving as a support system for the organizations that already exist, and if I can be a part of that, that would just be a great honor and a privilege.

If you could hang out with any former student, who would it be and why? 

If I can hang out with any former student, I think I would hang out with [James] Earl Rudder actually, just because I often when we give tours, I talk about Rudder Tower and how that like red flags [represent] Pointe du Hoc, the exact height of around 110 feet or so the second Ranger Battalion [climbed] back in the day. I think that's a really influential fact that I think really is close to my heart and just kind of what it means to me, but I think getting to hear from him and just like his experience in the military and leading Texas A&M. He's obviously really influential part of what A&M is, and I think that would be somebody that I really want to learn from.

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