Wonder why you are reading this amid a pandemic? These uncertain
times are exactly when taking action, making change, and creating
a better future are more important than ever. Precisely why I am
running to be President of the Student Union Assembly.
I am Shivika Sivakumar (she/her/hers), a second year Computer Science and Politics double major passionate about using technology for social good.
My primary goals as President are to:
And my platform to addresses these goals is C-H-A-N-G-E
It’s not about me, it’s about you, and it's about us!
Nineteen years, seven schools, five states and two countries is my story. The world I come from is an interesting combination of Gujarati dandia, Delhi weather, Hyderabadi biryani, Bangalore traffic, Cupertino boba, and Santa Cruz beaches. As an Air Force Officer’s daughter, I had been to many states within India and moving to new places was routine for me. With every place, came new friends and opportunity to celebrate new festivals and traditions.
However, coming to California during freshman year of high school was a much more significant change as this time, it was moving between countries rather than states. This time, there were substantial barriers to overcome like adjusting to an American accent instead of British, using dollars instead of rupees, and driving on the right side of the road instead of left.
But, along with adversities came opportunities to understand and experience cultural and societal differences. By handling negative stereotypes like “How do you know English, aren’t you from India?” in a humorous way, I chose to embrace the change and learn about Thanksgiving, the Civil War, and Pearl Milk Tea. Rather than confronting challenges like having to adjust to a completely new school system and curriculum with hostility, I chose to comprehend the new attributes and welcome the differences with a smile. By focusing more on opportunities than struggles, I overcame the initial setbacks with ease and grace.
My experiences helped me to be flexible and adaptable to any new problem in life. My positive outlook on the face of challenge, my understanding of various customs and beliefs and my learning of the importance of respecting differences between individuals based on race, ethnicity, religion, gender or nationality is what I aspire to contribute as the President of UCSC. My conviction in Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is one family) is what makes me stand out as a strong candidate.