Easing her way into a successful presidency, Brianna Bailey’s goal is to put her school and the voice of the students first.
Brianna Bailey is a senior political science major with a concentration in pre-law and a minor in criminal justice. When she’s not focused on politics, Bailey also finds herself enjoying singing and dancing.
“I have been doing them both since I was a young girl, but I am also highly into fashion,” Bailey said. “Mostly streetwear, but I love a little business professional from time to time.”
Strutting her way down the hallway, Bailey was the former Atlanta Speaker of the Senate for Georgia State’s Student Government Association and has now transitioned to being the president of SGA’s 92nd administration.
Transitioning into a more extensive and more complicated position can be difficult for some. Still, despite the pandemic and other outside factors, Bailey quickly and effectively gained the right tools to stay on top of her game.
“Preparing for this election season was different from the last in regards to campaigning,” Bailey said. “This time it was just entirely virtual because there’s no one on campus, so getting more people to know what I’m doing and what I stand for was something else I had to incorporate into my planning. “
Despite Bailey sharing that her transition between these two roles had a rocky start, her focus is to keep her goals and values at the forefront.
“People are what I value the most, so as the president, making sure that the student body‘s interests are prioritized over my own plan at all times is what matters the most,” Bailey said.”Frequently people let power and positions dictate how they operate, but for me, leadership positions are just titles.”
As most presidents have an agenda and a game plan to get the job done, Bailey has her playbook to keep not only herself but her peers at Georgia State winning in every aspect.
One part of Georgia State Bailey hopes to see change under her presidency is something that students have shared their opinions on for some time: advisors. However, based on her own experience, Bailey expressed that finding the right advisor is way more complicated than it needs to be.
“One of the primary issues the student body has complained about for countless years is advisement,” Bailey said. “Advisement is an integral part of student success, but without the proper support from advisors, students often find themselves lost and having to navigate through college alone.”
Another area that Bailey, along with many other students, wants to improve is the financial aid office. With each school year, a handful of students struggle to speak with someone or find it challenging to understand the university’s financial process.
“I want to figure out a way to establish adequate advising methods to ensure students have direction throughout their tenure at Georgia State,” Bailey said. “My one desire for this administration is to look back and say, “Wow, Georgia State has become a better university and is actively changing for the interests of their students.”
In addition to fixing advisement issues, Bailey seeks to ignite change within her organization so that students from Georgia State’s campuses are taken care of and protected inside and outside the classroom.
“There are also many issues on campus, such as safety, that have been a topic of discussion but little to no actions taken toward resolving those problems,” Bailey said. Going back on campus after a whole year of virtual learning will be alarming to many students, so providing them with the appropriate resources for success and ensuring security is a critical task for SGA.
Being unafraid of failure while still wanting the best for those around her, Bailey describes herself as being about “putting words into actions” and following through with everything she sets out to accomplish.
“I genuinely hope that I can fulfill students’ requests. But, unfortunately, some of the issues at Georgia state university have been prolonged for too long, and it is definitely time for a change,” Bailey said.
“There is a lot of work to be done and to achieve those tasks effectively, but they have to be given to the right people.”
When considering the qualities of someone in a leadership position such as herself, Bailey believes that these qualities apply to anyone looking to be a leader, whether it’s in school, work, or the real world.
“Being an active listener is an essential quality to possess for any leadership position,” Bailey said. “All of the officers within SGA are delegated with the task to represent and act as the student body’s voice, but that is nearly impossible to do if you are not offering the students a listening ear.”
After completing all her hard work in undergrad, Bailey has big plans after graduation to go to law school and start her career.
“In the near future, I see myself graduating undergraduate as an honors student preparing to move to New York and attend Columbia Law School,” Bailey said. “ After obtaining my J.D. and passing the bar exam, I plan to become one of the top criminal defense attorneys to end my career as a Supreme Court Justices eventually.”
When reflecting on the journey it took to get here and the journey she has ahead of her, Bailey is still hopeful despite it all.
“2020 has been one of the most trying years for many of us, but it is not the end. 2021 is a new beginning, a fresh start. Experiences are lessons, but you have to be sure to learn from them,” Bailey said. “Coming into the 2021-2022 school year is more exciting than any other year because we have so many lessons to apply to elevate our lives to higher standards. We can take the things that have gone wrong and make them right.”
“Anything is possible when you put your mind and hard work into it,” Bailey said.