Meet Renata Valquier Chavez: a UNO athlete, honors student and the next student body president

Photo courtesy of Renata Valquier Chavez
Valquier Chavez will be inaugurated the week of April 23.

Alexandria Wilson

The University of Nebraska at Omaha will inaugurate Renata Valquier Chavez as the next student body president and student regent the week of April 23.

A sophomore majoring in biotechnology and political science, Valquier Chavez has been a part of student government since her freshman year of college and before that in high school, where she served as president her senior year.

“It’s something I’ve always had a drive for,” Valquier Chavez said. “I had a feeling in my heart that this was my year.”

Valquier Chavez is also a member of the Honors Student Association, UNO’s track and cross country teams and Sustain UNO. She said she has a passion for all things UNO and a passion to make a difference for Mavericks.

“I felt that there was a lot of potential to do great things for the student body, to make each student’s individual experience better in the position of student government president/regent,” Valquier Chavez said.

Valquier Chavez has experience with working to improve UNO. As a senator in student government this year, Valquier Chavez passed a resolution for seasonal lighting on campus. Valquier Chavez’s goal with this resolution was to battle Seasonal Affective Disorder and to boost overall moral during the winter months.

Valquier Chavez said she wants students to know there are ways they can have an impact on campus, even if they’re not involved in student government. She said she hopes serving as student body president will help her to pick up more projects and see change happen on campus faster.

“For any campus organization that has ever felt overlooked, I want to bridge the gap to make it known that it’s never overlooked,” Valquier Chavez said. “No matter who you are and what you are you are doing on this campus, it is seen and it is appreciated.”

Valquier Chavez also wants to make student government more transparent and accessible for students.

“I envision us doing coffee talks with Renata,” Valquier Chavez said. “I kind of want to mimic FDR’s fireside chats and meet up on Sunday nights and do a livestream feed of what has been done in the previous week and where the government is going next.”

Students will not have to wait for a coffee talk to catch up with the president. She invites anyone who wants to talk to come on a run with her and said her best ideas often come while she’s running.

“Everyone is invited to come on a run with me, email me if you’re interested,” she said.

Valquier Chavez plans to take an open-door policy during her presidency, and she encourages students to stop by any time, insisting she will not be bothered.

“For the people that voted for me and the people that didn’t vote for me, I’m here to represent you and be for you,” she said. “UNO is such a diverse community of ideas and backgrounds that we cannot be summed up by just one person, but what I can say is that I’m prepared to lead the way and pave a path for each of us to stand out as leaders.”