Pushing Myself

Kerry McManus ‘22
Kerry McManus '22 at podium with a gavel

I liked the people in SGA, and I loved the work. I’ve never been the person to needlessly complain. I like to do something about it.

A self-described “political nerd,” Kerry McManus ‘22 said getting into student government was a logical path once she arrived at Fitchburg State. The history major has minors in secondary education, American studies, social science, and political science.

Within weeks of getting to campus, she was interested in the Student Government Association. 

“I really hit the ground running,” she said. “I liked the people in it, and I loved the work. I’ve never been the person to needlessly complain. I like to do something about it.”

McManus embraced many facets of campus life beyond student government, serving as an orientation leader, working as a building manager in Hammond Hall, and has been an officer in several campus clubs and honor societies in addition to completing the university’s leadership training programs.

“I like to get out of my room and be with people,” she said.

Her own leadership credentials include two years as president of the Student Government Association, where she was gratified to provide a voice for students. “I realized how responsibility-oriented I was,” she said. “I found I can do public speaking, and I learned about conflict mediation in a positive manner.”

Among the contributions she is most proud of in her SGA service was having wellness days added to the academic calendar, which she said was much appreciated by students navigating their studies during the pandemic. And she has learned a lot from collaborating with university leaders like Vice President for Student Affairs Laura A. Bayless.

McManus said she will graduate knowing she has seized countless opportunities that came her way.

“I’ve always wanted to push myself to find things I truly enjoy,” McManus said. “I may never be the best leader in every room, but I’ve pushed myself.”

This story was originally published in the Spring 2022 edition of Contact magazine.