As the end of the school year approaches, our newly elected Associated Student Body (ASB) members have already begun planning out next year’s events and themes, with President David Kabanje at the helm. After a successful retreat in Nebraska City, the ASB team is brimming with ideas. I sat down with Kabanje to get the first scoop about what we can expect next year.
The first thing I asked him about were his new team members.
“I can already tell this group has a passion for serving Union,” Kabanje gushed excitedly. “They come from diverse friend groups, they’re very intentional and just have so much lively energy.”
Together they came up with next year’s theme: #OnFireForU.
Kabanje explained the hashtag and why the team is passionate about it. “The U is interchangeable. What ASB wants everyone to know is that we’re on fire for you—you as an individual.” The U can also be swapped out for ASB and school events, like #OnFireForFallBanquet, so everyone can find pictures on social media more easily.
As for new things to expect next year, he couldn’t divulge too much, but was able to give some ideas of what students might look out for.
“I’m excited to bring new events, maybe on Sundays, that promote community,” he said with a knowing smile. “I’m also really excited to collaborate with UNL and see where that goes.”
He couldn’t say more, but he was willing to share what ASB hopes to see happen.
“The main goal for next year is to empower our students, and inspire them to do more than they think they can do,” Kabanje said.
While Kabanje is excited about his new team, as ASB president he has personal goals for next year he hopes to accomplish.
“I want to connect with as many students as possible, and build a relationship to the point where they can talk to me, so I can represent them,” he said, looking more serious.
It’s obvious Kabanje takes his new position seriously, a position he acquired not only because of Union’s students trusting him, but because of the encouragement he has received from his mentors as well.
“Dr. Becker talked to me. She’s the one who furthered the seed that was already planted, and I was honored that she would recommend me,” said Kabanje about his decision to run. “I wanted to add more to what Drew, Debbie and previous presidents have done."
His overall love for Union was also a driving factor. When asked what makes Union so different from other colleges, he had a clear answer.
“The human connection,” he said simply. “The enriching community. We care about each other; we’re not strangers. And we give each other opportunities to grow as leaders, as collaborators, as artists, as writers, teachers, and we find a way to balance all of that and call each other family. That’s why I love Union.”
Graci Escobar is a junior English major with an emphasis on speaking and writing. She loves cats, napping, reading, cuddling cats, browsing independently unpublished stories, binge-watching Netflix, and petting cats. Born and raised here in Lincoln, Graci would love to see the ocean more than seven times and hopes to one day hug every cat in the world.