Brockport SGA President and Vice President Paving The Way For Female Student Leaders

Devin Bonner (left) and Danielle Fenley (right)
Devin Bonner and Danielle Fenley are leading the Brockport student government with strength, courage, and honor.  Check out their story below!
1.     What is your name and position?

Devin Bonner: Devin Bonner, President of Brockport Student Government

Danielle Fenley: Danielle Fenley, Vice President of Brockport Student Government
                Member of Communications Committee in SUNY SA
2.     What is your major and year?
DB:Public Health Major with a Minor in Graphic Design
DF: Psychology
3.     How did you get involved in both campus SGA and SUNY SA?

DB:I first got involved with BSG as an Office Assistant in the Spring of 2015 and then applied and was hired to be the Chief of Staff for the following year.  Soon after that, Danielle approached me and asked if I would be interested in running for President and Vice President together.  We were elected in April of 2016!

DF: I wanted a job that would help me with my Graphic Design skills and so I applied for Marketing Coordinator. I was in that department for two years and there I realized my passion for design, branding, and marketing. Even though I loved the Marketing Department, I wanted to continue growing as a leader so I decided to pursue Vice President of BSG with Devin as President.
4.     Why did you get involved?

DB:I was an RA at the same time that I was an Office Assistant and my Senior RA approached me and thought that I could be a good fit for the Chief of Staff position, since it was primarily a Human Resources position within BSG.  Since I had only been affiliated with BSG for about 3 weeks prior as an Office Assistant, I didn’t feel as though I would even have a chance at the Chief of Staff position, but with that helpful nudge, I was able to have the confidence to make a difference within the organization- and I’m so glad I did.

DF: To be completely honest I got involved because I wanted a job and in particular a job that would help me with my Graphic Design skills. Even though this is why I initially got involved, it is not why I stayed involved. I stayed involved because BSG became my home away from home (which is 6 hours away), BSG gave me friends that I will have for the rest of my life, and BSG helped me grow as a leader and a person in general.

5.     Why you think its crucial for women to get involved in student government?

DB:Though I believe that it’s important to recognize successful women within leadership roles, my ultimate goal is to no longer have to acknowledge that a woman is successful. The day that I am not acknowledged for being a young woman within a leadership role, is the day that I can rest.  My hope is that it is that the future female leaders will not be female leaders, but simply leaders.

DF: I believe it is crucial for as many underrepresented groups as possible to get involved in student government so that every single student that is accepted and attends SUNY feels like they are safe, heard, and see that they can also be a leader.
6.     What is something you wish you knew when joining?

DB: That Student Government is one of the most valuable experience that I would have ever had the opportunity of experiencing!  This role has changed my life and my future career.

DF: When I joined BSG I didn’t realize how it would become a lifestyle, not just a job. Advocating for students and caring about each and every student at Brockport is hard work but is worth it and so very rewarding.
7.     One tip for women who wants to get involved in either/both campus SGA and SUNY SA
DB:Give ’em hell. You deserve this just as much as the men in the room.  Don’t let anyone underestimate you.
DF: Give them hell. It’s the advice my dad gave me when he found out I was elected and what many other people have told me in my time here at BSG.  Don’t be afraid to speak up if you don’t agree. I’ve found that often there are many times when no one else has thought what I have thought. There are many brains in a room for a reason, use every single one.
8.    Who inspires you?

DB: Emma Watson. She’s such an amazing activist for so many causes.

DF: It is a typical response but my father. He was my coach growing up and he always pushed me to be better than everyone, including the boys. Even if I was the best girl, that didn’t mean I couldn’t be the best in general. That is something I admired in him. He pushed me to be the best and challenge any gender discrimination.
9.     What is one fun fact nobody knows about you?
DB: I’m quite literally addicted to coffee.

DF: I wore the same pair of Converse sneakers for my entire JV and Varsity Volleyball career. (Thanks Dad)

These two inspiring women continue to pave the way for women at Brockport.  Check back Wednesday and Friday for more women of SUNY!
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