Conversations with presidential candidates: Nashbi Grand-Jean

Nashbi Grand-Jean said it was “more of a spiritual calling” that lead him to pursue the office of SGA president.

The junior Resident Assistant was inspired by former SGA President Fortune Onwuzuruike, who told him about the position.

“He was one of the first people who told me, ‘Hey, you know it’s something to consider. You know your senior year, your junior year, to run as president,” he said.

With four other candidates vying for the position, Grand-Jean’s approach to the prospect of him losing the election was humbleness.

“God forbid if I do lose this election, I’m going to take my agenda and hand it to the winner,” he said. “I know that definitely I’m going to be here for the university regardless.”

His vision for Georgia State is to increase the growth and accessibility of the university.

“There’s a big vision that I have for Georgia State. It includes renovation, it includes accountability, transparency … and school spirit,” he said. “There’s not a school on this planet like Georgia State. We came a long way.”

Expanding on school spirit, Grand-Jean said he noticed that there was a lack of unity between the student body.

“I don’t think we have a flag that everyone can be proud to carry. One of my biggest dreams is to make sure before I graduate that we initiate traditions and school spirit,” he said.

“As part of renovation, I think that SGA is an amazing organization. It’s a bright machine. But man, we need to change the oil,” he said. “I think that the system runs well, but I just think there’s a few things that we can do in SGA to make it run smoother to provide the transparency, to provide the avenues for students to get involved.”

He credits some of his platform to his time in the attorney general office with the creation of a constituency office dedicated to hearing students’ concerns.

“Constituent services is so important. It’s literally the front lines … I want to bring that to Georgia State where students have like a direct line that they can call for SGA to advocate for them, to be able to support them, to be able to know the resources that are provided on the campus, that students just have a direct contact, a direct voice within SGA to bring their visions, their dreams, their needs to a reality,” he said.

Another thing he wants to implement is the transfer of SGA onto iCollege so that students can better be notified of events and SGA proceedings.

“One of the biggest things I want to do is bring SGA to iCollege … 50,000 students, the moment you’re enrolled you’re in SGA,” he said. “When we pass resolutions, when we pass bills, you guys get notifications. When we have polls that we want answered, like ‘How do students feel about this?’ … that way we can gather data, we can gather statistics, we can make sure that students are completely aware of what’s going on on campus and to make sure that they can receive all the support that they need … I think for too long the students have been coming to SGA. I want to make sure that we come to you all and to let you know that we’re here.”

Grand-Jean wants to walk across the stage with one questioned answered and with one message.

“What did I do for the school?” he said. “Let’s unite. Get ready to work.”