SGA co-presidential candidate statements


2023 SGA Co-Presidential Candidate Statements 


The Candidates:

  • Rocco Bressi
  • Giavanna Mancy
  • Zaara Sahgal
  • Mac Sims

The Questions:

  1.  Why do you want to run for the SGA? Briefly describe what you hope to do if elected?
  2. What do you have to contribute to the group?
  3. If you haven’t run before, why now?


Rocco Bressi

Hi, my name is Rocco Bressi, this is my 4th year attending The Hill with three of them spent being a day student, and this is my first-year boarding. I would love the opportunity to run for SGA co-president because I feel like I could be a great leader in the Hill community. I have shown my leadership on the track team, basketball team, in the classroom, and with my friends in the dorm.

Ever since last year’s debate, I regreted not running. I thought that I wouldn’t win if I did, so I never even tried. Now, I am given the opportunity to run again, and I feel like I’d be wasting it once again if I didn’t. I have been living with too much regret and now I can say that I at least tried my best. My interest in being co-president stems from me wanting to be a leader. I love doing sports because it allows me to be a leader to the underformers, understanding where they are since I’ve been there myself.

In the classroom, I have proven myself to be helpful towards others who have questions, especially in piano. This is my 3rd year taking the class and am considered the most experienced in the class. Mrs. Neiswender will ask me to help with some of the students, even calling me her T.A. Like track, I have been able to demonstrate my leadership through practices, warmups, and cheering on my fellow teammates during events, especially my brother. I love to scream at him while he’s competing so that everyone knows that he is my brother and how proud I am of him.

I feel I could contribute a good amount to the group through ideas I have and being a proud spokesperson at lunch and other events. I would love the opportunity to give lunch announcements and be a “hype man”. Noah Toole is a great inspiration for me, as I always saw a little of myself in him. One idea, that isn’t original, that I would really love to push for is “No Tie Fridays” or something of the sorts. I have also received many complaints from the day student population and, as a day student alumni, I feel I can speak for all of them and would be the number one advocate for an improved day student experience.

One motivator for me running is the fact that each co-president gives two chapel talks, and seeing that each have already given one, I see this as my opportunity to be able to fulfill that feeling of regret for not being able to give one. Chapel has always been an important part of my Hill experience and I would love to share my story with the school, as many before me have. Another thing that is important to say, is that I have already submitted most of my applications to colleges, which means I can’t even put that I’m the school co-president on my transcript. This, I believe, makes this debate one of the most important, as most of the applicants can’t put it on their applications.

I didn’t run last year because, quite frankly, it just didn’t work out. My friends convinced me to run, and I wanted to, but could never find someone that best fit me to run with. I did ask Stefanie, but it was too late at that point. I think that it is funny that I could potentially still be able to work with her in the SGA. I had the whole idea of me reading things out at lunch in my head, and I regreted not doing it since then. I believed it to be a huge mistake that I never even

attempted it, so I want to go into this thing not regretting anything for the rest of my senior year. I need to stop second guessing myself and be prepared to do anything and everything. I think that being on the SGA could help me with a lot of my social anxiety and be able to teach the school a couple of things before I leave. With all that being said, I would like to thank you for taking the time to taking me into consideration for the new co-presidential candidate. I hope that you at least enjoyed this, and even if I am not elected, I will continue to practice my new lifestyle of no regrets wherever I go.


Giavanna Mancy

I was raised in a house full of girls and a singular brother. As the baby of the family, I had the privilege of learning from those older than me, such as the importance of confidence. My sisters always made sure I fostered the characteristics essential to be a strong, courageous, and independent woman. Throughout my life, I’ve expressed and defended my values by never holding my tongue and speaking up for what is right, no matter what may come from it. I have always stood my ground for others, especially my friends and loved ones. I have an empathetic heart, and I pride myself on my ability to be there for people. I consider myself a leader. Leaders, like everyone else in the world, often make mistakes. However, what makes a leader so great is the ability to learn from these mistakes, ensure that it does not happen again, and grow as a person. On every sports team I have been on, I have a positive presence and I respect others. As Confucius says regarding his golden rule of ethics: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Those experiences gave me the courage to run for Class President at St Ursula, my hometown High School. I was Class President in both my freshman and sophomore years. I contributed significantly to my class and would call meetings, share ideas, and conduct activities. I want to run for SGA because I want to have a positive impact to The Hill School. Last year, I entered as a new student and could feel every Hill Student’s pride. Within months I had a list of unwritten rules and traditions the Hill School had compiled over generations. I soon wanted to ensure everyone I met felt the same love of the school. I wholeheartedly believe I can spread that love and continue Hill’s great traditions if given the platform. One action I hope to take if placed on SGA would be to re-instill Hill Pride. Some practices and unwritten rules are forgotten, and respect is lost across campus. I see people walk on the seal, across the pitch, across the quad during the school day, and around campus on their phones, unable to look up, smile, or say hi. I am observing a disconnect in our community. I would be a president for the people because I believe the connections you make with people is one of the most importants aspects of life. I want everyone to live by “Hill ties never sever,” not because it is a saying but because we all believe in it.

I genuinely believe I have much to contribute to the group, or I would not consider running. I want to see the best things done for our school and the student body to continue the positive memories for future students. During Covid time, I had the opportunity to learn the values of hard work in my family’s restaurant. I learned a lot about service and sacrifice for the betterment of the business. Those same motives that drove me while working for my family still motivate me at The Hill today also known as The Family Boarding School. I stated I have a passion for Hill like no other, and I believe you can see that in my attitude daily. I make my best effort to support my fellow students in theater, athletics, school, and much more. I believe that my outgoing, unapologetic personality will be an asset to the SGA. I want our graduates to look back on this time as something extraordinary. I wish to contribute advocacy for others by presenting student ideas and concerns during meetings. By balancing the workload of tasks equally between Stephanie and I, we can work to foster and maintain authentic Hill Pride in every student and the student body as a whole.

The only reason I haven’t run in the past is that I didn’t understand what it meant to be a Hill Student. I couldn’t fully grasp how 500+ people on the campus had such pride in their school. By this time last year, I was still opening doors to rooms I had never been in before. I was still finding my footing. Over last year, I took significant steps in learning and growing to become the

person I want to be. With that, my understanding of being a Hill Student and the weight it carries grew. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have an election before the fall term closes. For me, this timing is perfect as I feel I am more prepared than ever to take up a leadership role.


Zaara Sahgal

I want to run for SGA because I want to be able to represent the Hill student body and bring my own perspective into the way in which this school is led. As I am going into my fourth year at the Hill school, as a 6th form, I have felt more empowered than ever to voice my thoughts, and I think that the role of SGA co-president would give me the perfect platform to do so. If elected, my goal would be to uplift the student body and bring back the morale that was largely lost after covid. Many of my leadership positions revolve around the philosophy of enhancing student life, which I hope to bring to the SGA. It is undeniable that morale has been at a low and the community has been more divided than ever before. We’ve undergone many challenges in the last couple of years, but it’s time to restore the Hill us sixth formers can remember. If elected, I will make it a priority to restore morale and become the advocate for student needs. I will do what’s in my power to make Hill feel like Hill again. As we are concluding our Hill career, I want to help sixth formers restore the Hill community that we loved freshman year. Sixth formers were able to experience a Hill before Covid where frankly we were much more connected as a whole. I hope that through my position I will be able to bring that back through encouraging the involvement of the student body in activities that the school plans. Hill is “the family boarding school,” but in recent years the senior class has seen that name slowly crumble. This school does not feel like we are a family as a whole, instead we have let our differences divide us. I will help the school feel the connection that we need in order to be the family boarding school again. I hope to get intel from the student body and amplify their voices to the faculty. We are constantly coming up with new ideas and issues that can be solved, and I want to be the voice in which we can make Hill a happy home. I will stay in communication with the student body so that people can voice any concern to me. As president, I would like to start doing more active campus events that students can sign up for. One thing that I have noticed is that the upbeat dynamic around campus has been lacking during the weekends. Although weekend trips are something that Hill students have utilized greatly, I want to create more fun events on campus such as the dorm cup, carnivals, silent discos and broomball tournaments. It is traditions and events like this that bring the entire Hill community together.

I come from an incredibly diverse background, where I was raised in 2 different countries and I have the perspective of what it is like to not only be a boarder, but also an international student. Furthermore, I’ve been actively engaged in this community throughout my 4 years. I’m currently the head of social media coordination for SAMH, president of South Asian Student alliance and 2 other clubs. Through my position in these clubs, I have learnt how to be an effective leader at Hill. Through my extensive experiences in positions such as president of a club, I am well versed in communicating with the administration effectively. Through my leadership positions I have been able to grow as a leader and learn the ins and outs of what it means to work with others as a team. Also, I am incredibly adaptable and in adverse situations, I can easily come up with resourceful solutions that can meet both parties’ needs. Although it has taken a lot of work and time to grow upon, I am very confident in my abilities and myself. Being in this position means that I will be contradicted a lot and people will have issues with the way that I do things, but I know that I am confident enough to stick to my values and that is one thing that will never be shaken.

In the past, I had gone through a very rough time mentally and physically, as many of you know, last year I suffered from a severe concussion. I think that I was never in the right place to take on such a large position such as the SGA, so I decided to take on smaller leadership positions such as DEI, SAMH and various club presidencies. From these adversities that I had to overcome, I have learned countless amounts of lessons that I believe have formed me into an exceptional leader. Now I am confident to say that I have built up the skills and am in the right headspace to be able to take on such a significant position.


Mac Sims

For most, co-presidency is synonymous with leadership. It’s a position that gives individuals an outlet to serve the Hill community by addressing issues across the student body. While many extend this opportunity to promise you all trust, respect, and initiative, I think there’s much more to it. To me, co-presidency means building bridges. For those who have not had the opportunity to take Economics yet, what I mean by this is acting as a facilitator of conversation. A bridge builder is someone who puts the collective benefit above their own, in order to engender a positive, efficient, and convenient environment for the campus to operate on. Now, more than ever, I believe this is necessary. Communication, or lack thereof, has paid a toll on mental health, discrimination, educational issues, and essentially every hardship we’ve endured as a community. However, as I become a more confident, proficient, and networked student here, I feel that I can most greatly spearhead efforts to address these notions across all aspects of Hill life. You matter, and your opinion matters, but the value at which these are considered is what ultimately makes a difference, and is likewise my incentive to run. In this position, I hope to utilize my own skills, alongside Stefanie’s, to make a collaborative and inclusive impact. I firmly believe that everyone can contribute to this position equally, and only together can we build upon it to cultivate an incredible community and create a greater Hill than the one below our feet today.

Without a doubt, anyone who is applying for this position has what it takes. Organization, drive, commitment, and empathy are all qualities we share. However, my experiences are a way in which I could possibly offer a more unique contribution. As students and aspiring leaders, it’s important to know the difference between learning skills and knowing how to apply them. After moving frequently growing up, spending extensive time catering to my physical health, and navigating my way through a splintered family situation, I have developed distinct qualitites that have built my headstrong and community-centered personality. Alongside this, having managed these issues while being a boarding student at Hill have individualized my experience, allowing me to learn how I can apply such skills in a school environment. Another quality I hope to bring to the table is my risk tolerance. Both as a kid and at Hill, I’ve subsited on escaping my comfort zone. My classes have only gotten harder and my commitments have asked a lot more of me as the years have gone by. Despite this, I’ve continued to thrive, showing nothing but improvement in my academic, athletic, and social lives. With this constant growth, I hope to translate these efforts towards my community. Although the SGA is another step out of my comfort zone, I’m confident in my ability to use my life experiences to my advantage and likewise use my risk tolerance to advocate for larger issues at hand.

Despite a continuous interest in the SGA, I have never brought myself to run. Like I said in my previous responses, I’ve developed a lot as a student over my time at Hill. And despite consistently challenging myself, I mainly used my third and fourth form years to balance my psyche and adjust to some difficult cirumstanaces in my life. With these issues taxing my time, and mental health, I felt as if I couldn’t accurately speak and commit to my entire form. However as I’ve developed as a person, my level of exposure towards larger commitments has helped me finally solidify a voice of my own. In late last spring, I heavily considered giving a shot at the presidential process. However, an extreme mental strain caused by my ACL recovery and family issues made me realize that it wasn’t in my best interest to add yet another exacting commitment. It lives as one of my biggest regrets today. In lieu of the circumstance, I’m

extremely thankful to be given another oppurtuniuty to bounce back from this regret, and likewise to do it at a such a crucial time. The positions importance has been amplified in recent weeks, because now, more than ever, students need a leader that they can trust. As a current student leader, I feel extremely drawn towards the position given this added duty, and see it as my moral responsibility to support our community in areas that need it most.