Student Government candidate profiles: Devin DeVore

Devin DeVore, a freshman in agriculture and society, is running for a College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Senate seat.

Devin DeVore, a freshman in agriculture and society, is running for a College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Senate seat.

Ashley Tibbs

Iowa State Student Government election polls open Monday. Two of the seats on the ballot are represented by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Devin DeVore, freshman in agriculture and society, is one of three candidates running to serve as a senator for the college.

Why do you believe you are qualified for this position?

“I am a state officer for the Iowa State Future Farmers of America Association and that term is just about up for me, so I’ll really be freed up. I was looking not only for another opportunity to get more involved on campus, but also another representation role where I can be that voice for other people … I believe that I’m qualified for this position because not only do I have experience in representing like I have already mentioned, but leadership as well, and how to work well with others on a team, or others that I’m unfamiliar with. Just a few examples of that is through my FFA experience, I’ve had to work with people on a team this last year. A team of nine of us have navigated this pandemic and leading our organization of 16,000 members. It’s been a challenge, to say the least, but working on a team, I have learned, has been really helpful. I wouldn’t have wanted to tackle that alone. I also have had to learn how to collaborate and work well with others whom I maybe don’t see eye to eye with on some things, or we come from different backgrounds, and that’s been a really beneficial experience as well.”  

What are some of the biggest issues you feel need to be addressed in this next year?

“There are certainly a lot of big issues at the table and I think our executive slates are doing a really good job at really critically analyzing those and coming up with specific action plans on how to handle those. I’m a big proponent of all of those, from diversity and inclusion to financial success for students at Iowa State, and I really look forward to working with either of the executive slates on those issues. However, some of my platform points that will more directly affect the people in my college — not so much universitywide — is starting a farm-to-fork program through the university by partnering with university farms, such as the Ag 450 farm, the Good Earth farm or even departments such as the horticulture department or the beef production department, etc., to increase the amount of locally sourced foods in our dining centers, hopefully, as well as our greek community. I think we all know … that’s good for the local economy, the environment — there’s just so many pros to that, and I think that’s an initiative that all Iowa State students would benefit from, but that would also specifically benefit the College of Ag and Life Sciences as we’re partnering with departments in the college, we’re providing jobs for students in the college. That’s an example of something I would like to work on for the people directly that I would be representing … I look forward to working with the executive slates on some of those big picture issues that will affect the entire university.” 

What do you hope to accomplish as senator?

“Another thing I’m a big proponent of is supporting our university clubs and events … There’s around 800 or more clubs here at Iowa State and every one of those clubs hosts events. Those clubs have to go through a financial request form or fill out an allocations form in order to receive money from Student Government to be able to host events. Furthermore, each Iowa State student pays $44 in a student activities fee. I’ve been telling my constituents that I want to make sure they get the biggest bang for their buck out of that $44. We need to analyze our allocation process and ensure that the majority of that money is going back into what that money was paid for — and that is clubs, activities and events within those clubs. It’s going to be my goal to ensure that we can get more of those dollars back into clubs, events and activities for the students at Iowa State, because that’s what they paid that money to get back out of.” 

How will you represent the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences?

“I’m a member of several clubs here on campus. If I had the time I would go to a club meeting every single night. However, I’ve been a little busy here recently with state office, however, that term is coming to an end here in a few weeks so I’ll have a lot more time. One of my goals for myself is to attend as many clubs in the college as I can. That will allow me to get to know my constituents better, which in turn will allow me to better represent them. If I’m at the clubs and I’m hearing the things that they’re talking about — the ideas they’re coming up with, the events they’re putting on — I will be better able to bring that to the table of Student Government and tell other senators ‘Hey, people in the horticulture club are working on this. What can we do to support them?’ Because I think there’s a lack of outreach from constituents to Student Government, for a simple lack that they don’t know what Student Government is or they don’t have a great understanding about it, so I can bridge that gap by reaching out to them instead.”

Why do you think it is important for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences to have an equal role in Student Government?

“I believe that all colleges, obviously, should have an equal seat at the table in Student Government. There are several colleges that make up this great university and we all work together to make the university what it is. I’m not going to …. tell you that the College of Agriculture is better than any other college; I would be biased in saying that because that certainly is my personal belief, but all colleges are equal and they all deserve an equal seat at the table. With that being said, however … I look forward to not only working on projects college specific for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, but I look forward to working with other senators from other colleges as well as housing senators — off-campus IFC as well as the residential halls — to make student life a better place in those areas as well. It’s outside of just the College of Agriculture. Another thing I would really like to do is improve the Student Government atmosphere. As we’ve all kind of seen in the last few weeks and few months, in my opinion the atmosphere of the Student Government is not the welcoming environment we would like to see for all of our Iowa State students. It would be my goal to make Student Government a more professional atmosphere, a more positive atmosphere and an atmosphere where all senators are willing to work with each other and get along and truly not just use the phrase ‘improve student life’ as a buzz phrase, but be actionable on that and truly do things that will benefit our colleges, our university and most importantly our students.”