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Jelma Flores-Mota Video Transcript

[Interviewer] Welcome to the University of North Georgia Political Science & International Affairs Department YouTube channel, where we present interviews of our students to highlight their accomplishments and their insights. In the coming minutes, you'll get to meet senior Jelma Flores-Mota. Jelma is a Political Science major with a Pre-Law concentration.

[Interviewer] Good morning, Jelma.

[Jelma] Good morning.

[Interviewer] To start us off, would you please tell us a little bit about yourself? Who exactly is Jelma Flores-Mota?

[Jelma] Yes. I'm a senior at UNG Gainesville campus, currently studying Political Science with a pre-Law concentration and a minor in Public Relations. I went to North Hall High School and was born and raised in Gainesville, GA.

Some of my favorite pastimes is to listen to music and hang out with my family, as well as enjoying doing photography and makeup as well.

[Interviewer] What got you into the world of politics Jelma in the beginning? And, why did you choose to seek a Political Science degree with your pre-Law concentration? And, perhaps most importantly for many of our viewers, why here at UNG?

[Jelma] So what got me interested in politics was as being a minority and having a minority background, I always believed that it is important to stay up-to-date and aware of what's going on, not only near you in your city or your state, but also just around the world. Which is why I believe, you know, I got into politics. Why did I choose specifically the pre-law route? I remember in high school actually, I took a Business Law class with Mrs. Filchak. And she actually made us do like a mock trial. And she brought in both prosecutors and defense attorneys. And they were there along the way to help us through the whole process of studying the case, looking at evidence. And we actually were able to go to the Hall County Courthouse to do the mock trial.

The reason that I chose UNG was because I had friends and family that studied here, both in the same and different degrees and they loved it. And I wanted to stay close to home.

[Interviewer] I understand your life here at UNG has just gotten a bit busier, or at least it may appear to be busier in the coming academic year. Why is that?

[Jelma] I was recently elected as the first university-wide SGA President. And with that comes a lot of responsibilities. I have to be able to represent all five campuses at all times in an unbiased manner.

[Interviewer] Well, congratulations. That sounds like quite an honor. Can you tell us a little bit about, you used the phrase "SGA" -- what is that and what will your new position really entail?

[Jelma] So SGA is a student organization, and it stands for Student Government Association. And that is where we the students represent the student body and we advocate and represent all UNG students while being able to create a welcoming and engaged and inclusive environment. And we are here to make sure that our voice as students is being heard, as well as being a liaison between students and faculty and staff. And in my role as President is to make sure all campuses are running smoothly and solve any problems they may have. And with this position, we will be able to tackle on university-wide problems instead of just having to stay on campus level. And this will allow better communication with the Board of Regents as well.

In the past, when we would go to conferences, the Student Advisory Council conferences and not all five presidents would be able to go -- UNG wouldn't have an even representation at these SAC conferences is what they called them. And we wouldn't be able to represent other campuses because we're not from that campus. As the university-wide president, I'm able to go and represent all five campuses and being able to represent them all five equally. And being able to learn more about what's going on at the USG system, instead of just staying on the campus and working on small little things which they're still important, which is why we still have vice presidents in those positions. But we do really need someone that is able to tackle on these university-wide problems. And we would be able to be equally represented.

[Interviewer] Okay, well, it sounds like you're going to be very busy. How do you plan on balancing a very full academic load -- your pre-Law concentration -- with your SGA responsibilities?

[Jelma] The way that I'm balancing it is just making sure one doesn't overtake the other. Because as soon as I start focusing on one area, I lack in the other. So keeping a very well 50/50 balance and having those times separate and try not to do two things at the same time has helped a lot with balancing both school and SGA.

[Interviewer] Do you see or do you anticipate your current major or your past academic courses being of a particular help to you in your new role?

[Jelma] I believe so. With a Political Science major -- in classes, you're told to look at things from different perspectives and an unbiased view. And to separate your personal beliefs and relationships and find solutions for issues or politicians and stuff like that. And that is exactly what I'm doing as SGA president. I am detaching whatever point of view I have for a campus or personal relationship and setting that aside and trying to choose a solution that will work for all five campuses. And I have to do that unbiasedly.

[Interviewer] In closing, Jelma, what do you have to say to our viewers who are either prospective students or our former students?

[Jelma] I want to thank our former students for giving us an amazing foundation to work with. UNG is an amazing school with a lot of resources. And once you find those resources, you see the full potential that UNG has. I know a lot of people see UNG as a community college, but it really isn't. It has so much more than that. It has amazing opportunities, amazing internships, study abroad opportunities as well. As well as organizations like SGA. So I really recommend to look into UNG as a prospective students that don't know where to go. UNG is a very amazing option.

[Interviewer] Thank you for your time Jelma, and all the best with SGA, and as you continue to  experience more as a member of the UNG PSIA family.

[Jelma] Thank you.

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