2 Minutes With … is a series of short features to introduce us to the passions and interests of Lawrence students on and off campus. Find more 2 Minutes With … features here.
Story by Isabella Mariani ’21
Life off campus at her Chicago home is pretty different for biology major Ghania Imran ’21.
After juggling classwork, research in the biology labs, and service on the Lawrence University Community Council (LUCC), she’s finding distance learning during Spring Term to be a bit of an adjustment.
It’s also motivating her to reconnect with student government when students return to campus.
Imran has spent most of her Lawrence career connected to campus through LUCC, Lawrence’s student government organization. Though her once-active university life has slowed a bit, Imran still thinks fondly about her extensive involvement with LUCC.
Imran first found a long-lasting niche in LUCC when she became a class rep in her freshman year. This wasn’t unfamiliar ground when she ran for the position that winter. Imran was a debater in high school and has always had an interest in student government.
“I think I very naturally gravitate toward leadership,” she says. “I like to do things outside of biology in my free time.”
She discovered an enthusiasm for campus involvement as a class rep, which inspired her to run for president in her sophomore year. Her efforts landed her the vice president position, which she served this past year. That included the role of Finance Committee chair, where Imran managed a budget of half a million dollars and approved financial requests from campus clubs. She also served on the Steering Committee, approving new and existing clubs. She was hooked.
“I learned to love it really quickly,” Imran says. “It was so fun.”
LUCC furnishes students with the special opportunity to impact the student handbook. Exercising her right as a Lawrentian is one of the things she misses most about student government.
“It’s really cool that students get to do that,” she says. “I miss it, I love being super involved.”
Having been so active in LUCC, Imran thinks about her peers as they do their work while quarantined.
“I can’t imagine what LUCC is going through. Student body engagement is already difficult while you’re on campus in person. We worked so hard on that.”
Though there’s no doubting Imran’s passion for student government, genetics and cell biology is where she stakes her future. Last summer, she joined associate professor of biology Brian Piasecki in the lab to genotype the behaviors of a microscopic worm called C. elegans. This research helped her realize her abilities to do biology research in grad school.
Now that she’s home, the LUCC veteran is considering running for JBoard, LUCC’s judicial board. She would take the position next year.
“It feels weird not having a hectic schedule,” she confesses.
Isabella Mariani ’21 is student writer in the Communications office.