As the chair for UConn’s chapter of PIRG, Emily O’Hara will be responsible for coordinating and running general member meetings with the executive board, as well as handling campus relations.
O’Hara, sixth-semester political science and English double major, said she looks forward to working with the executive board to achieve more grassroots wins for the student body.
“My vision for next year is for the organization to continue to develop so that we may be even more effective facilitators of activism here on campus and in the state,” O’Hara said. “I think we’re going to achieve a lot of wins on our campaigns.”
O’Hara said PIRG has plans to work with USG on a big student engagement event in the fall, as well as continue to work on the New Voters Project.
“This fall, we’re really excited to work closely with other student groups and function as an advocacy resource for students,” O’Hara said. “I want to make PIRG even more fun and dynamic with core meetings in which students can skill build in activism so that we can take those skills to a local, state and even national level of activism.”
O’Hara said she worked with PIRG as a grassroots intern her freshman year, and worked on the 2016 New Voters Project. She also started coordinating the Save the Bees campaign, which she said gave her teamwork, organization and management experience.
“I have been continuously amazed and impressed by the commitment students have shown to advocacy,” O’Hara said.
O’Hara said PIRG taught her valuable skills such as multitasking, prioritizing and effectively empowering a group of people, and she looks forward to sharing that with others.
“If I can pass (those skills) on to other campaign coordinators, then I have shared some of the most positive elements of my PIRG experience,” O’Hara said.
During her time as vice chair, O’Hara started an activist mentorship program, and she looks forward to the program continuing as a self-care experience for activists new to PIRG.
O’Hara said that outside of PIRG, she can be found with friends or studying in the library. She is also a tutor in the Writing Center, and used to work as a First Year Experience mentor.
O’Hara is on a pre-law track, and said she is really excited to apply to law school in the fall.
“I’m also now considering applying for a graduate program abroad,” O’Hara said. “My experience with activism has really inspired me to go deeper into the nuances of organizing.”
Ashley Anglisano is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.