At first, it wasn’t for her.
Before getting involved in campus activities, Temple Student Government President Nadine Mompremier planned to graduate in three years. College seemed more of a necessity than an interest.
“I originally did not like school,” Mompremier said. “My involvement [in TSG] and my friends are what kept me here at Temple.”
Last year, Temple students elected the Owl V.O.I.C.E.S. slate as the 2008-2009 leaders of TSG, led by the soft-spoken Mompremier.
What began as a stint on the homecoming committee in 2006 led to her role as last year’s vice president of student affairs, and now as president of the student body.
“I’ve been watching and learning since freshman year,” the senior law and business major said.
One main goal of TSG this year is to involve more students in the legislative process, Mompremier said. It’s important to get students’ voices heard to initiate change, she said.
“Our whole goal is to get more of the student input and student voice into the TSG meetings,” she said.
A notable change to TSG this year is the inaugural Senate, a group of 32 representatives from Temple’s nine schools and colleges. Non-members can bring up concerns to the Senate, who will follow up on the issue and even pass a bill to be presented to Temple administration.
“TSG is definitely going to be the voice of the students,” Mompremier said. “We came in with a vision, and we knew what we wanted to do. And now we’re leaving it up to the students to tell us what to do from here on out.”
Mompremier is joined on the executive board by Vice President of External Affairs Nexus Cook and Vice President of Services Farzad Firoz.
Cook, a senior psychology major, will be focusing on TSG’s commitment to the community and what the organization can do to expand itself.
Firoz, a senior finance major, will be responsible for researching special projects that could potentially be brought to Temple, Mompremier said.
“It’s definitely exciting to work with both of them,” she said. “The three of us together – I feel like we make a really great team.”
What Mompremier hopes will make them a great team is their dedication and willingness to interact with students. She quit her job so she can focus more of her attention toward the issues of Temple students.
“I’m available,” she said. “Just talk to me.”
Hailing from Brooklyn, Mompremier has embraced her home in North Philadelphia, which is why she wants to accomplish so much for Temple students.
“Since I came to Temple, I’ve fallen in love with the school,” she said. “I’m definitely passionate and I definitely know we can do more.”
Mompremier speaks like she’ll be the people’s president, promising to support student organizations by attending various events and “being the best me I can be.”
“One thing that has been instilled in the TSG environment … is helping to build future student leaders,” she said. She said she had been inspired by past presidents Raysean Hogan and Juan Galeano.
The decision of whether to run for student body president was difficult for Mompremier, but she has the confidence to represent the university’s 19,000 undergraduates.
“When I came to Temple, I did not plan to be the president,” she said, smiling. “For me, it was knowing that I could do more [by] learning from everyone else.”
Now sporting sentiments opposite those she had in her freshman year, Mompremier has some simple advice for incoming students.
“Don’t be afraid to open yourself up and learn something new every day,” she said. “Get it from Gandhi – be the change you want to see at Temple.”
Mompremier’s positive attitude toward the upcoming academic year is evident when she speaks, but she’s humble about her role in TSG.
“I’m definitely trying to leave a legacy, but it’s not my main goal,” she said. “It’s to reach those one or two students who said, ‘I could never do something.’ If I can just motivate those one or two students, that’d be a great accomplishment.”
Chris Stover can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.