Student Senate president meets with lawmakers on Advocacy Day
Susan Garcia, 44, a native of Rosemount, Minnesota, is earning her Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in the Executive Assistant program at Dakota County Technical College. A first-generation college student, Susan is graduating this May. Along with her degree, she’ll have her Multicultural Supervision certificate.
During her time on the DCTC campus, Susan has been a remarkably engaged student beyond the classroom. She serves as Student Senate president, Phi Theta Kappa chapter president and a student ambassador. She also belongs to TRIO Student Support Services, the Multicultural Student Leadership Association (MSLA) and Christian on Campus.
She competed at the Business Professionals of America (BPA) College Division State Leadership Conference (SLC) in February 2017 and qualified to advance to the National Leadership Conference.
Susan is also involved in LeadMN, a Minnesota public two-year college student association with 180,000 members. She participated in a LeadMN event called Advocacy Day, Hungry for Change, in February 2019. She traveled to the State Capitol to confer with state legislators, including Karla Bigham, Anne Clafin, Tony Jurgens, Rick Hansen and Matt Klein. Discussions focused on key LeadMN issues such as Minnesota College Promise, Hunger Free Campuses, Open Educational Resources and Transfer.
“The senators and representatives wanted to know if the issues we presented were part of a bill,” Susan said. “They wanted to know how they could participate. They were definitely good listeners.”
Another aspect of Susan’s LeadMN connection is her work to help DCTC become a Star Campus again this year. “We are one star away from achieving Star Campus status,” Susan said. “We will earn that star when we attend the 2019 Spring General Assembly in April at Breezy Point Resort. DCTC is one of two colleges that has been designated a Star Campus every year since the award began.”
More about Susan…
Susan’s career goals are linked to becoming an executive assistant for an international company. She’s also open to the idea of continuing her education at a university, Saint Mary’s or Metropolitan State, in a business-related program.
As a full-time wife, mother and college student busy with numerous extracurricular activities, Susan doesn’t have a lot of extra space in her schedule. When she does get a spare moment or two, she enjoys reading nonfiction books concerning history and empowering women. Her husband, David, is senior director of field services at Best Buy. They have been together 24 years, married for 11.
Susan and David have two children, Blasa, a 10-year-old girl, and Masedonio, a 4-year-old boy. Both are bilingual, speaking English and Spanish. David’s grandparents are from Mexico. Susan is the pack leader of two dogs, Abrazo, a 13-year-old chocolate Lab, and Azul, a 6-month-old blue great Dane. The family resides in Cottage Grove, Minnesota.
Three words that describe you as a college student:
DETERMINED. OVERACHIEVER. SUPPORTIVE.
Susan Garcia at DCTC gallery
Susan Garcia • Q & A
What do you like best about being a student ambassador?
All the opportunities to really impact students and campus visitors.
What are you responsibilities as Student Senate president?
I serve as the liaison between students and college administrators by serving on a number of committees. I am the student representative on the DCTC Foundation Board. I recently served on the search committee for the college’s new vice president of equity and inclusion.
How has your involvement with LeadMN helped you grow as a student leaders?
I’m able to network and communicate with students and leaders on other campuses. You become more aware of higher education agenda items as well what’s happening at other colleges.
Why should students participate in student clubs, organizations and activities?
Participation enhances your success. I wouldn’t be nearly as successful in college if I wasn’t involved outside the classroom. You feel that people are counting on you the more engaged you become—and that’s a good feeling.
Why did you choose your career path?
I was a retail general manager for 12 years at Gap and J.Crew. The work is very stressful, and working nights and weekends makes it hard to find daycare. As an executive assistant, I’ll be able to apply my personal skills to help people—plus, no more retail hours.
What one word best describes your experience at DCTC?
Susan Garcia • 12 Answers
- Favorite sport or physical activity: Running; my plan is to run a half-marathon in December 2019.
- Place you would most like to visit: Spain
- The most exciting thing you’ve ever done: Having my kids.
- Your personal motto if you had to have one: “Be determined.”
- Favorite all-time TV show: Moonlighting
- Favorite all-time movie: Sixteen Candles
- One thing you most want to accomplish in life: See my children graduate from college.
- Your national bird if you could have one: Robin; they’re a sign of spring and something really great to come.
- Dream occupation: Running a dog daycare
- Person you would most like to meet: Michelle Obama
- Skill you would most like to learn and master: How to cook Mexican food for my family.
- Most important issue or problem facing humankind: Educating girls and women around the world
Learn more about Student Senate and Student Life at DCTC by contacting:
Associate Director of Student Life
Student Senate Office
DCTC at Advocacy Day
Ryan Monio and Kevin Day, two DCTC students, attended Advocacy Day through their membership in Business Professionals of America (BPA).