Candidate Statement: Miranda Van Iderstine '13

1. For what position are you running?

I am running for the position of senior prefect.

2. What makes you feel that you are qualified for the position? Please describe any leadership experiences you’ve had, if applicable.

I feel that I am qualified for this position because I have a lot of experience taking on leadership positions. I am a member of Community Council at Harvard-Westlake, meaning it is my job to create community service events from scratch. I am given the responsibility of talking to the student body and particular groups and clubs in order to find an event that most fits them and their interests. I think that being on Prefect Council would involve similar responsibilities as Community Council does, which I have experience in, such as planning events, advertising them, and most importantly, talking with the student body and taking their opinions into consideration when doing so.

In addition, I have a lot of experience working with the administration, as for every community service event planned, I not only have to find faculty chaperones, but I also need to talk with multiple faculty members to approve the trip. In addition, I was one of the community council members working on the Spring In Your Step dance, so I am familiar with what planning a school wide event entails.

I am also very involved in the Harvard- Westlake Ambassador Program. Because of this, I have experience communicating with students and conveying the overall student message when I participate in the Student Panel on Family Visiting Days. Finally, I am one of the H-W Blood Drive Club heads. As a head, it is my job to communicate with faculty members in charge of this event, in addition to students participating in it and the Red Cross Foundation itself.

3. How do you feel about the Honor Board and what has led you to feel this way?

I think that the Honor Board at our school is something that really sets us apart from other schools. Creating a community based on trust, where one feels comfortable to leave his or her Apple computer in their backpack outside of Taper is unique and great. I understand that it is hard for prefects to sit on honor board and make decisions that are best for a certain situation, and I think they have been taking this very difficult task on and executing it very well, setting a high standard which I feel I can live up to.

4. Please describe one thing in Harvard-Westlake’s community you would change. Also, how would you use the influence of the position of Junior/Senior Prefect to change our community?

If elected prefect, I would try to amend the distance and lack of communication between faculty and staff and students in Harvard-Westlake’s community. In order to do so, I would propose a rule where students would be mandated to meet with each one of their teacher’s by the end of the first month of school. Not only would this help those struggling in specific courses, but it would give students a chance to get to know their teacher a little bit better. Although most kids do visit their teachers within the first month of school, it would allow students who don’t need extra help to visit their teachers simply in order to talk and build a relationship with them or kids who are too quiet to set up meetings the chance to do so. I would also try to facilitate student faculty games, perhaps a student faculty dodge ball tournament or another sports competition, all in an attempt to lessen the barrier between faculty and students.

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