Preston Wimberly: Politically Active
June 05, 2013
The opportunity to play football brought Richardson native Preston Wimberly to Angelo State, but as the new president of the Student Government Association (SGA), he now hopes to be the school’s top cheerleader.
“I love ASU and I want everybody to love it as much as I do,” Wimberly said. “I want to walk across campus and I want it to be like a 50,000-person UT, but I want it to be ASU. I don’t want us to be Texas, I want us to have the same kind of atmosphere, but be ASU. We should have passion like that.”
As a political science major, getting involved in student government was a natural outlet for Wimberly. In 2012-13, he served as the SGA director of external affairs and Honors Student Association president. He can trace his interest in politics all the way back to his childhood when he heard a speech by then-President Bill Clinton.
“My mom always tells this story way more than I do,” Wimberly said. “She says, ‘You heard him talk, he said something about bringing both sides together,’ and I was saying how I wanted to do that, that’s what I wanted to do.”
When dealing with different issues, Wimberly also employs what he is learning through his minor is philosophy.
“I like to think outside the box,” he said. “I think that’s where that philosophy minor comes in. I see stuff from a different perspective. I think that’s a good quality to have.”
“I do have a lot of ideas, but I don’t want to make any decisions without knowing for sure they are reflecting the student body.”
As SGA president, he also wants to be a conduit for other students’ ideas.
“I do have a lot of ideas, but I don’t want to make any decisions without knowing for sure they are reflecting the student body,” Wimberly said. “They’ll look to me as the students’ voice, and I really want to be reflecting that voice. I want to know that is what other people want.”
“We’re going to be out the first week of school to meet all the incoming freshmen,” he continued. “I’ll be out there helping them to move in. We’re going to have a big sheet of paper laid out and have people write their concerns.”
Also a member of the ASU Honors Program, Wimberly was chosen to attend The Washington Center’s Campaign 2012 Academic Seminar in Charlotte, N.C., and the 2012 U.S. Naval Academy Foreign Affairs Conference in Annapolis, Md. He has also been involved in the Honors Program’s Community Leadership Initiative, serving as a student member of the San Angelo Chamber of Commerce and volunteering with the nonprofit Downtown San Angelo Inc. Those community experiences have inspired another of his goals as SGA president.
“I’m looking at doing something like that for our senate meetings,” Wimberly said. “I’m going to contact our Lake View and Central high school student councils. I think it would be mutually beneficial for them to come, see our meetings and see what we do. It could connect us to the community. There are a lot of positives to it, recruiting as well.”
“I think we’re underutilized in the community,” he added. “At the end of the year, I want people to say ASU is our biggest asset in the city. I want to bring us into the spotlight and show the community ASU is a main driving factor in San Angelo.”
Even though he no longer plays on the ASU football team, Wimberly is happy with his decision to come to Angelo State and will now help lead the university into the future.
“One of my best friends goes to a larger university and he’s just a number up there,” Wimberly said. “Whereas here, I’m Preston Wimberly and I sit in the front row and my teacher knows me. I love it. I think we get a better education. We get deep knowledge of where we’re going.”
“That’s why I love ASU,” he added. “That’s why I would choose ASU every time. You walk across campus and you see a bunch of people who know you. My roommate and I were downtown and he said, ‘Wow, you know everybody.’ They all go to ASU.”