SGA candidate profile: Montez Soliz

Northern Star Staff

The following is the response to a Northern Star questionnaire sent to all SGA candidates. Answers have been lightly edited for clarity and consistency.

Soliz is running as vice president in the executive branch.

Name: Montez Soliz
Year: Sophmore
Major: Biology / Political Science
Hometown: Rockford, IL

Why do you want to be part of SGA?

SGA is made to learn about our student’s concerns and how we can best address them. If you were to learn anything about me, it would be that I value people’s opinions and struggles and try my best to be of service to them. It’s just something that I have done all my life and will continue to do if elected.

What do you hope to accomplish during your term?

First and foremost, it is a privilege to be part of Brian Acosta’s ticket as we share for the most part the same platforms. We have to focus on the unfocused. That’s been a motto of mine for as long as I can remember. We have to focus on our undocumented students in providing adequate support so that they may further their education. We have to focus on our black and brown students in ensuring their voices are being heard. Most importantly from the past couple of days, we need to shine a light on hate crimes and in particular, hate crimes towards Asian Americans. Every human being should be treated with respect and dignity likewise every student should feel safe in attending this university no matter their gender, age, race, sexual orientation, status, etc. I also hope to accomplish tackling mental health here on campus. It’s definitely a topic that is not widely talked about and I want to be one to shine a light on it.

Why should students vote for you?

I have had the honor of getting to be President of my class in high school as well as president of our student council. I’ve worked with people from many backgrounds and I know I have what it takes to reach out to people and communicate effectively. As they say “teamwork makes the dream work”. I believe that I have great teamwork skills as well as organizational skills that will also guide me as Vice President if elected. I take what I’ve learned and implement in my life and the skills acquired from having previous leadership positions will only benefit me in this role. I hope to not only bring a fresh perspective to SGA but to bring compassion and leadership as well.

What do you think is NIU’s biggest area of improvement?

NIU definitely needs to improve on student involvement and student outreach. Our students need help more than ever due to the climate that we are in and it’s going to take all of us to accomplish those situations. NIU offers so many resources and yet it feels as though none are fully being talked about. We need leaders that are going to go that extra mile to walk up to students and start a conversation. I am that leader.

Why is student government important to you? Why should the student body care about
it?

As someone that is majoring in Political Science alongside my major of Biology, this means everything to me. SGA gives students like me a chance to show that they have what it takes to run a community of people. It brings foreword leaders to come together and do the best that they have to offer. I love the idea of what SGA could be. SGA could be so much more than it is already but we need people that are going to make that change and in all honesty, we need a new perspective of how we approach SGA. Yes, it may be nice to have prior experience in SGA but if you are not addressing our student’s concerns then it’s not benefitting the student body. The student body should care about SGA because the student body has to hold SGA members accountable for their actions. You are voting for someone that is going to ensure that your needs and voices are being met and heard. Electing Brian Acosta as President and myself as Vice President will ensure that we are focusing on the unfocused.

The Northern Star is publishing the candidates’ responses to our questions as they are given to us. The Northern Star is not endorsing SGA candidates.