Temple Student Government Student Body presidential candidate Anthony Torres found a true passion with student organizations after transferring to Temple in Fall 2011.
Torres said he hopes to increase involvement and interaction between the two if his Diamond Nation ticket is elected to office.
Torres believes in his platform. He describes his strong belief that individuality is celebrated by Temple’s diversity, but that student organizations are what make students of different backgrounds unite.
“Even though Temple is so diverse, sometimes when class is done, you stick to your own kind of people,” Torres said. “That’s understandable, that’s human nature. But student organizations push everyone together, and I think that’s the real definition of being united.”
The now third-year student’s decision to come to Temple disagreed with his family’s wishes, as his mother and sister both attended Rutgers University in his home state of New Jersey. Regardless, Torres transferred into Fox School of Business’ accounting program before deciding to switch his major to human resource/management.
“I wanted to make my own legacy,” Torres said.
He added that his family’s experiences with the economic downturn made him much more aware of the value of his education, and his motivation in classes began once his father lost his job of almost 10 years at a printing company.
“I saw the real picture,” Torres said. “I see how hard my father works, and he’s always there for me.”
From that point on, he said, he knew that being part of his college community and emerging as a leader to help his peers get the optimal educational experience was important.
First involved with the Institute of Management Accountants, Torres quickly transitioned to become TSG’s director of local and community affairs after realizing that human resources was more up his alley, as a person interested in working with others.
Torres is also currently a student worker for Campus Safety Police, something he said he sees as very important in Temple’s community, on and off campus. As part of Diamond Nation’s campaign, he hopes to work toward integrating Temple’s student body with the Philadelphia community.
In his spare time, Torres said, he enjoys playing basketball, his favorite sport, with friends. He and a friend also recieved approval for a new Temple student organization, Student Hip-Hop Organization or SHHO, which will become an official group next school year. He said he began it due to his love of music.
Torres, who was a Boy Scout growing up, continues to value volunteer work at Temple. As the program coordinator for Adopt a Block, a volunteer program dedicated to cleaning up the streets of North Philadelphia, Torres achieved at least 100 hours more than his initial proposal of 1,000 service hours through TSG and other participating student organizations.
“I think I am one of the most passionate directors at TSG,” Torres said. “I’ll set a goal, but I’ll always try to exceed it.”
Volunteering and involvement in the community is something he would push amongst student organizations as student body president, he said.
He and the rest of Diamond Nation hope to improve TSG not only pursuing its own agenda in office, but by establishing a solid foundation for the next administration. Torres said he recognizes that everything he wants to accomplish for Temple can’t be accomplished all in one year, but he doesn’t want his followers to be “starting from scratch.”
“When we leave, people may not remember who I am,” Torres said. “But they will remember what we established, the programs and projects.”
As a transfer student, Torres knows all about trying to make the best of a new position and starting without much footing. He said he was dissatisfied with his own initial introduction to Temple, as he felt that transfer students didn’t receive the same welcome and induction into the Temple community that incoming freshmen do.
“You need to engage when someone first comes to Temple,” Torres said. “College is so much more than just going to class. I’m trying to make that easier for everyone else.”
Part of Diamond Nation’s campaign is to improve the non-traditional college experience, from transfer to commuting to foreign students.
Torres credits both family and friends as his support and motivation in deciding to run for student body president. Ofo Ezeugwu, TSG’s current vice president of external affairs, has been a role model for him and encouraged him to pursue the position, Torres said.
Danube Johnson, running with Torres as candidate for vice president of external affairs, said she was unsure about committing to the ticket until she met with him personally and was convinced by his passion and belief in his campaign.
“We’ve come together very quickly,” Johnson said. “We have a lot of good, dedicated people on our team.”
Torres agreed, noting that he believes the best way to convey Diamond Nation’s passion is to have a cohesive, bonded team.
“Temple is my life,” Torres said. “We want Philadelphia to be integrated and be proud to have Temple University here in [its] community.”
Erin Edinger-Turoff can be reached at email@example.com.