Fort Hays State University and the Center for Civic Leadership is committed to producing students that are engaged civic leaders. Emily Brandt, a Political Science Major, is an active student who is a leading change agent on FHSU campus. Ms. Brandt approaches social issues through her time spent volunteering and being civically engaged within the community, state, and nation. Her engagement is strongly demonstrated by her positions held within Student Government Association, as a Legislative Affairs Director and as current Student Body President. Ms. Brandt has also been politically active throughout the state of Kansas. She was part of a student team who successfully lobbied for the Lifeline 911 Legislation that passed the Kansas Legislature in spring 2016. Also her passion for community organizing has amplified after becoming aware of a grassroots organization named, Citizens' Climate Lobby (CCL), which addresses policies directed toward climate change. Emily has taken the initiative to start a chapter of the CCL here in Hays, Kansas. Finally, Ms. Brandt is a proud Tiger who has profoundly demonstrated her leadership at FHSU.
I do not think that I have ever been told no. Not to say that I have never been denied or not gotten my way, but my mother always allowed me to find those noes on my own. She allowed me to fail in pursuit of my dreams and my ambitions. She taught me, as a single mother, life hands me difficulties, but that it is up to me to build my support system and conquer those difficulties. I have learned through leadership roles that every position of leadership comes with its own challenges, but that it is a privilege to serve others. I use my privilege, as a leader, to be a voice for those who do not have one. To be their advocate in political arenas that they may not have access to. My passion for civic engagement reaches past the classroom and my role as Student Body President. It gives weight to marginalized voices and ensures their needs are met. I live my life by the example my mother has set. I seek out my own noes when those noes mean that I have strived for real effective change within my community and beyond.