Josh Wiesner: A No-Nonsense Kind of President

Elizabeth Bolin, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

“Student government is a lot of work, but it’s worth it because you are a part of making NDA a better place.”

This is what Mrs. Brown declared when asked for advice she would give to students considering running for class president or any position in Student Government. Students must be “willing to work on projects and attend all the meetings –and not run just to have something for their activity sheet or a picture in the yearbook.”

Nobody knows that better than Josh Wiesner, Notre Dame Academy’s 2015-2016 student body president. In a recent interview, Wiesner shared his own advice as well as his experience with Student Government thus far.

“Josh is a no-nonsense kind of guy who has always impressed me with his sense of responsibility,” Brown goes on to say. “He embodies the Student Government motto ‘Leadership is Action.’”

Wiesner says the same thing himself, and he considers his job multifaceted.

“I strive to be the voice of all of NDA.” He doesn’t deem himself an authority figure, but an equal, whose “duty [is] to not only be a role model for those attending NDA but to [also be] an outlet for everyone who attends this school.”

Students and faculty alike agree that Wiesner has done an excellent job living up to his promises in his short time on the job. Madi Polack, a sophomore at NDA, has an optimistic outlook on NDA’s future with the leadership of Wiesner.

“In my opinion he seems very friendly, responsible, and outgoing,” Polack explains. “I’m sure he has a lot of great things planned for the year.” Wiesner is excited as well and promises that he has “big plans” that he chooses not to disclose at this time.

Dr. Ravizza has seen more than a few student body presidents in his ten years at NDA, and he believes “Josh has all the leadership skills he needs to be successful.”

From his own experience, Dr. Ravizza remarks that the most important attribute of an effective leader is being able to listen, an attribute he recognizes in Wiesner.

Mrs. Brown articulates it best: “He’s a good listener, a responsible worker and a caring person. What more could we want in a president?”

Wiesner’s own definition of a good leader is someone who acts instead of reacts: “Leaders are organized and have a plan, but at the same time [they] are able to adapt to changes and problems that arise.”

Fortunately, Wiesner doesn’t have to execute or lead Student Government unaided. He assures the students that the majority of rulings are group votes, and all suggestions are considered.

Time will only tell what Wiesner has in store for us this year, but any student can have an essential role in the outcome.

Wiesner hopes to accomplish his goals with the help of the entire NDA family through “various means of social media.” He checks his email regularly, as does everyone on Student Government. He is adamant that everyone’s opinion is significant and will be respected.

Wiesner encourages everyone to get involved before it’s too late. “There is a spot in Student Government for anyone who has ideas and [is] willing to work hard to make them become [a] reality.”