Meet the candidates: Student Body President 2024 

Reading Time: 6 minutes As student government elections are nearing, take some time to get to know the student body president candidates for who they are beyond the campaign.

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Student government elections for the 2024-2025 term are right around the corner. Voting will be available to students enrolled in at least one credit and will be open from March 4th to March 7th. Get to know the Wolverines running for student body president.   

Carl Prior 

“What I want to do is bring the community to UVU,” says Carl Prior, a student body president candidate running for the 2024-2025 term. “My big push is that I want to reach out to not just UVU but all of Orem.”  

Prior is a self-described “super senior with a lot of schooling still ahead,” who has been at UVU since he was a concurrent enrollment student in 2019. He is set to complete his Spanish minor by the end of this semester and hopes to receive his MBA in Business Management with an emphasis in international business at the Woodbury School of Business after next semester.  

“I love visiting and seeing other cultures,” he explained. After graduation, “what I want to do is find a company here [in Utah], that has branches in Central or South America, so that I’ll be able to have a family here and work but then be able to visit these other countries.” 

Although the UVUSA is popular among other student government candidates, Prior has “been doing other things trying to expand [his] horizons,” such as volunteering with The Den during his first semester. He has since worked with Athletics, the Women’s Success Center, LDSSA, and ROTC.  

Prior has a lot of love for UVU’s Athletics, including non-sanctioned teams like lacrosse, hockey, and rugby. “They’re just so good,” he says. “I’m hoping to bring more recognition to those departments…I want there to be like hundreds of people watching.” 

He feels that UVU has taken great care of him. He has loved his experience and ultimately says, “I want to just keep it like that. I want to add my own element.” 

According to Prior, students should know that “UVU has their best interest at heart and they provide so much help and assistance so no matter what your situation is, UVU has a resource for you to utilize.” He believes that the hardest part is finding them “And that’s kind of what I want to help.” Prior wants to make sure Wolverines know how to access the many unique resources and opportunities UVU offers, whether that be tuition aid or student leadership positions, such as student government. “I would think that if more students knew about [them] then they will be more motivated to run [for leadership positions] and be involved.” 

While he thinks flyering and social media campaigns will be a great place to start spreading awareness on-campus, Prior is hopeful that he can go community-wide, “so that all the students that maybe don’t live in campus housing … will be able to know about it.” 

“Keep going” is the best piece of advice he has ever received. It came as 12-year-old Prior was on his last half mile of a 5k on a hot St. George day. Another significantly older racer encouraged him to keep going. “I’m convinced he’s like 90 years old right next to me,” he said.  

Finally, Prior wants the student body to know that his favorite jellybean flavor is root beer because it “brings back nostalgia” from the case of root beer his dad always had in his car.  

Mimi Barney 

“UVU has given me so much and has set me up for my future career,” says Mimi Barney, candidate for student body president. “I’m running [for student body president] because I care about the student experience and want to continue and foster a positive culture at UVU.” 

According to Barney, her “You Belong Here” campaign is built upon the idea that all Wolverines should feel welcome. The aim is to “ensure students feel like they belong at UVU and that there truly is a place for them. Whether it be in the classroom, clubs, or athletic events, each student who attends UVU deserves an exceptional college experience,” she said. “My goal is to help achieve that.” 

As a student herself, Barney feels that she can resonate with her peers. “I, too, pay student fees and probably have or have had classes with some of you,” she explained. She understands “the struggle of balancing social, academic, and personal affairs simultaneously” but has regardless “loved every minute” of her five years in college. 

Barney is currently a junior pursuing a degree in graphic design and marketing. While participating in UVUSA this year, “I have seen so much progression and growth,” she said. “I want to continue to aid in that.”  

So far, Barney’s “complete and total pride in this school,” along with her participation in extracurricular activities have been definitive of her student experience. “I have been so heavily involved in multiple UVU leadership programs during my time here,” such as UVUSA and the Ambassador program. “I would be excited to take that knowledge and apply it if elected,” she said. Off-campus, Barney worked with Mac’s Gift, a charity for Utah families with child cancer patients.  

One thing Barney wants the student body to know is how she values feedback. “I firmly believe that no progression or changes can be made by a single leader.” She instead thinks “it takes those around them to identify weak spots and create change.”  

She has a goal to “leave UVU better than where I found it,” which she believes should be done by empowering students to use their voices. In fact, she wants students to know that she will “have an open-door policy for you to come to share your ideas and feedback regarding changes you want to make.”  

She tries to remember to “Always be kind [because] You don’t know everyone’s experience.” She believes that “You can have your opinions and make your own choices, but at the end of the day, everyone is trying their best.” 

Barney is inspired by her parents, who “worked incredibly hard and sacrificed a lot to give me life full of opportunities.” In her free time, she enjoys reading, running, being outside, and watching sports. Her favorite jellybean flavor is bubble gum. 

She is “excited to (hopefully) represent YOU as a student.” 

Francisco Calderon-Mora 

“I think every student here at UVU has a story to tell,” stated Francisco Calderon-Mora, a candidate running for student body president. “I really want to try and challenge the idea of what a traditional college experience looks like.”  

Coming from a Mexican family, Calderon-Mora is bilingual in English and Spanish. He is a first-generation college student who understands how tricky it can be to get involved. “There’s a place for everybody here at UVU. And that’s what makes it so great,” explains Calderon-Mora. “But I think part of the challenge is finding that place.”  

He wants to help freshmen and first-year students get involved, “even if that just means helping them join a club or you know, a study group or just having them even just come to any of the amazing events that we have.”  

Calderon-Mora places a lot of value on his personal relationships and interactions with others: “It’s those connections with other people that really are at the heart of what makes UVU as amazing as it is and what makes college worth it.” The way he sees it, “it’s not just a degree that we’re working on here.” 

He also believes that he can resonate with students who have questioned their confidence and education journey. “I’ve experienced a lot of those same feelings of worry and anxiety and nervousness about what I’m even doing in college at all,” he explained, noting that his experience grants him a unique perspective that will help him connect with, understand, and properly represent UVU students. “I think as president I can really speak to those experiences and be a really strong advocate for student needs and interests.” 

According to Calderon-Mora, “What I really want to focus my campaign on is equipping students with the tools that they need to succeed and equipping them with the tools that works best for them.” Academic awareness, school pride, and students’ quality of life are the three main points of his campaign, he explained.  

“This isn’t my first rodeo in terms of student leadership,” says Calderon-Mora, who was student body president at his high school in Lindon. He explained that while there is always room to grow and improve, he’s had the opportunity to learn the ropes.  

When he started college, Calderon-Mora wanted to take a break from extracurriculars and eventually felt that his college experience lacked depth and texture. He changed his mind when he applied for and “had the privilege of making it” into UVUSA.    

Calderon-Mora noted that change comes very slowly, so it’s important to plan ahead. “As president, you only have a very limited amount of time” to make change. “It’s really easy to squander that,” he noted, explaining that he believes that his time management skills are a strength that will help him “hit the ground running.” 

Calderon-Mora is a junior working on a family science degree with a psychology major: “I just really feel passionate about making a positive difference.”  

He also wants students to know that he only recently became aware of “how amazing jellybeans actually are.” So far, his favorite flavor is “the blue one.”