Student Empowerment with Cait

Segment #20 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute


Meet Cait, who is involved in student government as an undergraduate as a former Grand Marshal, the highest elected student leader at RPI. Cait, who graduated with a degree in electrical engineering, is now pursuing her MBA with a concentration in life sciences entrepreneurship. Loves that RPI offers so many options for students to get involved. Go for it, Cait.

– Thanks, Alex, and hi everybody. When I was looking for colleges, I felt like every school I looked at had academic rigor and strong extracurriculars, but then I went to an RPI hockey game. And that’s where I learned that RPI students bring their passion and drive and commitment to everything, from the classroom to their hockey chants. I served as Grand Marshal or Student Body President for two years, and this is where I learned what really makes RPI special, student empowerment. As Grand Marshal, I wasn’t just playing student government. I helped with important staff searches, I wrote policy changes for our student handbook, I even helped write the 10 year strategic plan for the Institute. I felt like I was making real tangible changes. You don’t have to run for GM to experience the power of student empowerment at RPI. Our union is central to student life, and it’s a group of students that work with staff on the business operations and finances. Any of our 200 plus clubs have real world impact, from philanthropy organizations like Alpha Phi Omega, to our student run radio stations, WRPI Troy. When you get involved with extracurriculars at RPI, you have the opportunity to impact your campus, your community, and even the whole world, all while having fun. The stakes might be higher, but you learn so much more about yourself and about the world. This unique form of experiential learning is made possible by RPI’s commitment to empowering their students. As I’ve begun the job search, the skills I’ve learned through my extracurriculars have prepared me for the real world. Budgeting, policy writing, relationship building, these are skills RPI teaches you in the union, not in the classroom. I’m proud to know that as an alum, I will be able to walk through campus and see the impact of my time here, as many have before me and as you will too. Good luck everyone, and back to you, Alex.

– Wow, I can’t believe there are more than 200 clubs for students. How cool is that? There’s sure to be something for everyone, no matter what you’re interested in. Thanks, Cait, for telling us about how RPI supports student empowerment. Really cool, thanks again.

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