Monday, February 9, 2009

Campaign College Goes National!

When I was a sophomore at AU, I attended the very first Campaign College: AU Women to Win. It is a one-day campaign training program created by the Women & Politics Institute at Women's Initiative. The program is designed to encourage more women to run for student government positions at an undergraduate level, and to inspire them to run for public office later on in life. I attended the training, having no real interest in running for office. I went to learn about the structure of the Student Government, and how to lobby SG officials and AU administrators regarding issues I cared about.

As the day progressed, I thought, Hey, I could do this. It could be fun. I was also approached by Ashley Mushnick, our then SG President. She encouraged me to run. A few weeks later I campaigned for a seat in the Undergraduate Senate. I took the skills I learned at Campaign College and applied them to my campaign. I canvassed non-stop and came up with a cute catch phrase so voters would remember my name. And I handed out candy. You can never go wrong handing out candy.

I won my seat and have occupied it ever since, more or less. I also ran, unsuccessfully, for Student Government President last Spring. Now I am still a Senator representing the Class of 2009, and I hold an appointed position within the President's cabinet as the Director of the Department of Diversity Advocacy.

This past summer, the Women & Politics Institute partnered with AAUW ( and Running Start ( to bring Campaign College to campuses across the nation!

This semester we have organized three pilot programs at three very different colleges and universities. Just a week ago we had our very first pilot at Iowa State. We are also planning a training at Nyack College in New York. I am most excited for our pilot at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. I will be attending that training myself, to speak about the importance of women's political leadership.

Keep an eye out for more posts about this incredible partnership as we work to create a replicable model of Campaign College. Contact us at for more information or if you would like us to bring Campaign College to your campus.