Two students from Keene State College are running in the New Hampshire House of Representatives election. There are 400 members in the N.H. House, giving the Granite State the largest amount of representatives in the country.
The first student running for New Hampshire representative in Keene is KSC junior Joseph Stallcop. Stallcop said he was inspired to run for office after watching William Pearson speak at Solar Fest. It was there that Stallcop realized how he could make a difference, so he decided to run. “All my life, I’ve wanted to be able to make a difference so I decided the best way to do it would be to run for office,” he said.
Stallcop continued, “A lot of people don’t realize that change starts from the ground up and not from the top down, like we normally think.” He said that while he was not involved with student government in school, he did work with his community, which he said he feels more people should do. He said his major plan for when he gets in office is to make it so New Hampshire better handles the opioid epidemic currently harming the state.
Another student running for state representative in Raymond, New Hampshire, is KSC senior Richard Rousseau. Rousseau was also inspired by William Pearson’s run for state representative. He said, “I’ve always been interested in politics and a friend recommended I should run for state representative. I pushed that thought to the back of my mind for a few years, but after I heard William Pearson, I decided I should do it.” While he is also not involved with student government, he did say that he was the treasurer for the Keene State Democrats.
Rousseau said that young people should be more involved with politics in New Hampshire. He said he believes that because many young people are leaving New Hampshire [and] younger people have less of a voice in their government. Richard said his plan to solve this is to make education and healthcare more affordable and to aid the economy.
Program Manager for Diversity and Multiculturalism Initiatives Kim Schmidl-Gagne is a faculty member who works with student government. While she was in school, she was a Resident Assistant, but when she came to Keene State she got involved with student government to help students have their voices heard.
While she has worked here at Keene State, she said there has been a steady increase with student’s involvement in student government. She said she believes that students should not only be involved with student government, but also local and national governments through voting or going to a political rally. “It’s a small increase, but it’s steady growth, “Schmidl-Gagne said. “Student’s voices should be heard.”
Michael Fremeau can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org