New Black Hawk College student trustee Kelly Nache is gearing up for an unusual year.
“This year is going to be very unique and I’m sure we will have no shortage of challenges,” she said. “I’m interested to see how BHC and the students continue to adapt to the changes caused by COVID.”
From election to the future
The process of becoming student trustee was different due to COVID-19. Normally, swearing in happens at an in-person board meeting, but Nache started her service during a Zoom meeting.
“I was probably the first student trustee to be sworn in with bare feet,” she said.
Nache will represent the student body for the 2020-21 school year. The student trustee is a non-voting member who serves alongside the seven-member Board of Trustees, which governs Black Hawk College.
Every year, students elect a student trustee for a one-year term that starts in April. The position alternates between the two campuses annually.
Nache, a Moline resident, grew up in Viola and graduated from Sherrard High School in 2006. She started earning her Associate in Arts degree at Black Hawk College in Fall 2019.
“It’s something I had been thinking about for a while and I realized it was the best step toward the career I wanted,” she said.
Nache and her husband, Sam, moved from Charleston, S.C., back to the Quad Cities in the spring of 2019, and it felt like the right time.
After graduating from Black Hawk College, she plans to transfer to Western Illinois University-Quad Cities to earn her bachelor’s degree in accounting.
“I love the versatility of accounting,” Nache said. “You can work in pretty much any field, since all businesses benefit from financial planning and management.”
She also loves how accounting knowledge can help people in their personal lives, noting that having a budget and financial plan “can improve someone’s life in a very real way.”
Nache ran for student trustee because she likes advocating for her peers and serving as a liaison, and she also wanted to learn more about how a board works.
“I genuinely enjoy improving experiences for those around me,” she said, “so if there is something that can improve the BHC experience, I’d like to help the students bring that to the board.”
Studying at Black Hawk College
Nache decided to attend Black Hawk College because she wanted to enroll at a local college and because her husband had a great experience studying at Black Hawk.
“I have enjoyed my classes, even the challenging ones,” she said. “The professors have been great, and I feel like I’m getting a quality education and at a far better price than a university.”
Nache’s favorite moments at Black Hawk College are getting elected as student trustee and seeing her name on the high honors list for Spring 2020.
“Returning to school after a decade was challenging for me, and I worked really hard,” she said. “Seeing that was just a really nice moment.”
As fall approaches, Nache encourages students to stay positive and support each other. She noted that talking to fellow classmates through texting and calling can help with feelings of isolation. She also wants students not to hesitate to ask professors and staff if they need help or clarification.
Nache said students can reach out to her anytime to share concerns, ideas, or to get to know each other.