MTSU sophomore Michai Mosby will serve as the university’s next Student Government Association president — one of the youngest SGA presidents ever elected on the Blue Raider campus.
“I am just overwhelmed and overjoyed,” said Mosby, who is pursuing a degree in public relations and political science. “Already students are excited, and it excites me that students are excited.”
Mosby took the reins at the annual SGA Awards Banquet on Monday, April 24, in a Student Union Ballroom decked out in True Blue for a dinner reception and photo-ops. The symbolic passing of the large, ceremonial gavel from outgoing president Jada Powell to Mosby was made even more special by the attendance of his parents — Marcus and Jocelyn Mosby who had driven all the way from his hometown of Memphis — and the serendipitous date, his 20th birthday.
“That’s probably the biggest moment that I’m looking forward to,” Mosby said before the event. “My working relationship with Jada has developed over about two years now into a mentor-mentee relationship, so I think for the both of us that’s going to be where all the emotions just come. We’ve been so much working on transition and preparing for the banquet I don’t think we’ve really had time to understand the load of this moment that’s about to happen.”
Mosby said he began his journey in student leadership at Memphis’ Southwind High School where he served as class president.
“Coming to MTSU, I still had a passion for student voice,” said Mosby. “I served as the freshman council president, and Jada appointed me to serve as her chief of staff last year. I just was able to grow on my passion, learn the ins-and-outs of student government, hear the concerns of students and ways to address them.”
Weeks before being sworn in, Mosby had to think hard and “pray” about even joining the presidential race. No one else had applied at the point, so signing up could be akin to accepting the yearlong role.
“My thought process was ‘If not me, then who? If not now, then when?’ because we have a concern from students — they need effective representation,” he said. “I felt that all of the training and experience I have in student leadership prepared me for a job like this.”
Multiple students also approached him with the idea to run, a feeling of love and support that followed him through the campaign and into the post-election season.
“I see the excitement in freshmen and students who are not even on campus yet,” Mosby said. “I’ve had high schoolers reach out to say ‘I’m excited about coming MTSU. How can I get involved?’ That excites me as a leader to know that our work isn’t in vain, that students are really seeing the work that we put in, and they’re reaping the benefits of our labor.”
That sentiment was on display at the SGA banquet where Mosby was unable to take more than a few steps before being offered a handshake or enwrapped in a hug, receiving congratulations and birthday wishes from students, faculty, alumni and University President Sidney A. McPhee.
Monica Smith, assistant to the president for community engagement and inclusion, said she’s worked closely with Mosby and is confident he will do an outstanding job.
“I think three qualities are essential for a good SGA president: impartiality, integrity and strategic thinking,” Smith said. “Michai possesses them all.”
As the excitement of the election and the banquet ends and the start of Mosby’s term nears, his sights are set on unity.
“I want to help make sure we have great working relationships with all of our administrators and departments, to make sure that we’re all doing the best that we can to serve the students of our campus,” he said.” I think that we have an awesome and amazing campus: I’m so MTSU. And, I know we have administrators and faculty who feel the same way, students who feel the same way. It’s time that everybody came together to move this campus forward.”
As for the future beyond his presidential tenure, Mosby already knows the end of his term will not be the end of his political career.
“I definitely want to go into politics,” Mosby said. “I don’t know in what aspect yet. I could see myself returning home, maybe starting in the public relations side before moving into local politics myself.”
To learn more about how to get involved on campus through the Student Government Association, visit the website at https://www.mtsu.edu/sga/.
— Stephanie Wagner (Stephanie.Wagner@mtsu.edu)
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