Eastern Michigan University Student Body Vice President Desmond Miller isn’t conceited, but he’ll admit the only child syndrome might play a small part in his personality.
“People really dig me as a person,” Miller said.
Of course, Miller would have to be well liked in order to become Student Body vice president during his sophomore year.
Miller said he became involved in Student Government as a freshman after attending Fajita Fest, and became a student senator.
As his second semester began, Miller was approached and asked if he would be interested in running as president. He declined, because he didn’t feel experienced enough to take on such a position. When later approached and asked if he would consider running as vice president to Student Body President Matthew Norfleet, Miller gave the position more consideration and agreed.
Miller wasn’t lying when he said he felt he lacked experience. Up until Miller came to EMU, he had never been involved with student government.
“[In high school] I thought about being in student government, but I was like, eh, it’s rigged anyway,” he said.
While Miller lacked experience in politics, his career dreams were always directed at working with people.
“The earliest thing I wanted to be was a police officer. Up until last year, I wanted to be a doctor,” Miller said.
But throughout different phases and career choices, one thing remained consistent.
“I always picked a career that was aimed at helping the most people possible.”
Even at age 13 Miller was committed to working to help people. He said his church approached him to be a videographer for weddings and funerals.
“Yeah, it was awkward … You’d be surprised how many people want their funeral recorded, considering they won’t be around to view it,” he said.
Miller admits the experience was good.
“With the funerals, even though it’s sad being there, it makes me appreciate that I’m alive,” he said.
Miller was set to go to Michigan State University, but received a letter explaining MSU had accidentally admitted too many students for the Fall 2011 semester.
“I love challenges, I always try to find a plan B and a plan C,” he said.
For Miller, plan B was EMU.
“I had only planned to be at EMU for that one semester,” Miller said. “I got here and it’s something about EMU that pulls you. You want to be here.”
Miller especially likes EMU’s helpful professors and staff.
“The administrators are really on the students’ side,” he said.
Miller said he thinks EMU is very eager to work with students and respects student decisions. He specifically talked about his experiences this past year after he became vice president.
“The hardest thing to get used to was managing people older than me, especially during the hiring process,” he said.
Miller has gotten some other opportunities through his position as vice president. For instance, Miller rode EMU President Susan Martin’s bicycle.
“I gave her a heart attack when I rode it for like 10 minutes,” Miller said.
Miller also enjoys being able to help provide events for students.
“It’s very rewarding. It reminds me why I wanted this job in the first place,” he said.
Miller and Norfleet have been lobbying to ensure Halle Library would be open 2 – 7 a.m. during the final weeks of classes.
“They were going to close it, and we kept saying to give it another shot. If we can just get 20 to 30 people, they’ll continue the program,” he said.
Lo and behold, Miller and Norfleet were heard and plans were made to allow Halle to be open during those hours.
Miller began college with no political ambitions or experience and no intentions of staying at EMU. Since then, he has switched his major to public administration. He said he is taking a class in philosophy and plans to take classes on religions in an effort to diversify his views.
“I think it’s inevitable [that I’ll work for the federal government] one day,” he said.
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