This year, Tech introduced Ramblin’ Royalty, formerly named Mr. and Ms. GT. The Tech student body voted on the candidates, and the winners of Ramblin’ Royalty were announced at the Tech Homecoming football game on Oct. 8. The Technique got to talk with the winners, Lizzie Wright and Sean Alexander.
Lizzie Wright is a fourth-year NEURO major and is minoring in Philosophy and Health and Medical Sciences. Sean Alexander is a fourth-year BA major. Both Wright and Alexander have gotten very involved on campus during their time at Tech.
Wright was introduced to the EXCEL Mentorship Program during her spring semester of freshman year. She serves as a mentor for the program, as it provides students with intellectual and developmental disabilities to gain two certificates over the course of their four years at Tech.
Wright’s involvement within the Mentorship Program has allowed her to give back to the Tech community and serve as a mentor and role model for students. Wright has also been involved in her Greek organization, Alpha Delta Pi (social sorority) since her freshman year, where she has served as the Community Service Specialist, Music Education Specialist and Director of Facilities Management. She also serves as a leader in Campus Outreach, which is a campus ministry aiming to expand students’ faith in an approachable way.
These positions allowed her to gain valuable leadership experience and grow into the individual she is today.
Alexander became involved on campus starting off with joining a Living Learning Community at Tech, Grand Challenges, his freshman year.
He has served as a facilitator and retreat leader for Grand Challenges twice now.
Alexander also serves as a leader in Student Government Association (SGA), where he was a part of the Undergraduate House of Representatives for two years and now serves as Chair of the Joint Sexual Violence Advisory Committee (JSVAC). Alexander is involved in other organizations on campus such as Asian American Student Association, where he served as president his sophomore year, Sigma Phi Epsilon (social fraternity), Startup Exchange (Director of Scouts), Ramblin’ Reck Club, LEAD Fellow (Leadership Education and Development), Consult Your Community (Vice President of Client Acquisition), Bits of Good (Director of Nonprofit Partnerships), Office of Disability Services Student Assistant and Venture Capital Club at Georgia Tech’s Consumer Sector Head among a few others.
Central to the idea of Ramblin’ Royalty is a demonstration of community involvement Tech. Wright and Alexander feel that Ramblin’ Royalty has enabled them to serve as leaders on campus and be able to better exemplify the Tech motto: Progress and Service.
The process of applying for Ramblin’ Royalty includes being nominated by either a student organization or faculty member.
Then, the organization or faculty member who nominates a candidate writes a nomination letter and submits it to the Student Center Programs Council (SCPC). The student who is nominated for Ramblin’ Royalty must also write essays which detail their accomplishments throughout their time at Tech.
The nomination letters and written application essays by the nominated student represent 10% and 20% of the overall scoring respectively. Following these submissions, SCPC then choses 16 semi-finalists who must be interviewed, representing 50% of their overall score. Following the interviews, the student body then votes to choose their two favorite candidates, and that takes up 20% of the overall score for who are selected to be Ramblin’ Royalty.
To Wright, the honor of Ramblin’ Royalty represents the importance of encouraging the student body to get involved and pursue their passions through the help of the Tech community. Wright says that Tech has many resources that can help encourage students to pursue their passions, and she also emphasized the importance of finding rest and spending time with friends throughout the hectic times of college.
Alexander also spoke on what Ramblin’ Royalty means to him and showed great reverence for all the student leaders on campus, both on the field with him, and those that didn’t apply for Ramblin’ Royalty and like to serve without recognition. He attributes his accomplishments to past student leaders that mentored him and hopes to give back by helping future student leaders. In his remaining time at Tech, Alexander hopes to be able to create resources that empower student leaders to continue engaging and advocating for their communities.
Wright and Alexander both shared what their favorite part about being a student at Tech has been thus far.
Wright mentioned the passion that every member of the Tech community has.
“You can have a completely normal conversation with someone, and casually ask them what they want to do in life or what they’re passionate about and they’ll talk about something insane,” Wright said. “I was talking with someone I had just met the other day and he had casually mentioned that he was very committed to helping find the cure for a type of cancer, because his close family friend has been suffering from it for years and he feels like it is his duty to help find the cure on behalf of his friend. This is but one example of the incredible motivation and commitment that is so unique in each person yet so widespread throughout the community.”
Alexander similarly finds the people he has met at Tech as the best part of being a student here.
“I love the people and community we have at Georgia Tech. So many past student leaders came before me, and I hope that I have helped student leaders to come. I believe that the students here have so much potential and love/support for one another,” Alexander said. “Each student on campus demonstrates a fervent passion in whatever they do, whether it’s academics or advocating for themselves. Georgia Tech students to me have always been resilient and uplifting towards each other, a community that I will always cherish.”
The Technique also asked the two student leaders what advice they would give their freshman year selves. Wright said that talking with her freshman year self, she would recommend remaining in the organizations that she is most passionate about. She has found that Tech has such a wide selection of organizations that students can get involved with, which can become overwhelming. Wright believes that it may seem like a lot of people already know exactly what they want to do, but it is okay to try things out and get to explore what you are truly passionate about.
Alexander’s advice to his freshman self is to “fully do everything you can and want to do, but first take care of yourself. Identify a few people, things to do and places that are your ‘safe place,’ so that you can always choose one of those to go to whenever you’re stressed and overwhelmed. Once you’re able to ground yourself, then the sky’s the limit.”