Wednesday, September 19, 2018

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SDSU student Shelah Ott said being involved on campus has changed her life the most during her time at SDSU. (Credit: Shelah Ott) SDSU student Shelah Ott said being involved on campus has changed her life the most during her time at SDSU. (Credit: Shelah Ott)

Shelah Ott’s Aztec Experience

This Aztec is the sustainability commissioner for Associated Students.
By SDSU News Team

Name: Shelah Ott
Major (and minor): Sustainability with a minor in political science
Campus affiliations: Associated Students (A.S.) Green Love and Greenfest, Enviro-Business Society, AOD Task Force

1. Why did you choose San Diego State University?

It sounds kind of cliché, but the second I walked on campus I had a feeling that SDSU was going to be my home for the next four years. My decision was solidified once I learned about the variety of majors and the amazing resources the campus has to offer.

2. What inspired you to declare your major?

I was undeclared as an incoming freshman and actually switched my major several times, but I knew I would stick with sustainability after attending the E3 and Green Love meetings my sophomore year. I had an epiphany, and felt like I had finally found my passion in life.

3. What is the best piece of advice you ever received?

I think the best piece of advice I’ve ever received is that I can’t expect everyone to have the same heart as I do. I pour my entire heart into fighting for environmental justice, and at times become disheartened when I think about how many people turn a blind eye to environmental problems. But the reality is that not everyone cares about the environment in the same way. I’m hopeful that this is changing though.

4. Which SDSU faculty or staff member has been the most influential throughout your SDSU journey?

A.S. Director of Facilities and Sustainability Glen Brandenburg is the advisor to the commission I chair. He’s acted as an incredible mentor and guide, helping me navigate the craziness that comes with being a student leader and creating a sustainable future.

5. What does student success mean to you?

In my opinion, student success means that every student on campus has found their own community. Without community, it’s impossible to feel inspired or supported enough to go after what you desire.

6. What experience at SDSU has changed your life the most?

Being involved on campus has undoubtedly changed my life the most. More specifically, being an active member of Green Love my sophomore year and chairing the commission this year has taught me so much about myself, others and ways to stay hopeful amidst a chaotic world.

7. What has been your proudest achievement while at SDSU?

I think my proudest achievement has just been offering students a welcoming community environment to be involved on campus. I’ve worked hard to create a safe space conducive to growth while helping student develop into leaders so that they feel empowered to make the changes they see necessary.

8. What’s your favorite thing about being an Aztec?

My favorite thing about being an Aztec is walking on campus and seeing the faces of those working hard to create changes within the SDSU community and beyond. I feel so fortunate to have met ambitious people that bend the norms in order to fight for justice on all fronts, and it puts a huge smile on my face.