Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Leadership lived: Sophomore takes on multiple leadership roles at UIS

Nick Zambito came to the University of Illinois Springfield ready to be a leader. As a freshman, he helped start the Habitat for Humanity Club on campus and was recognized for outstanding leadership by the Capital Scholars Honors Program.

Now, as a sophomore dual majoring in criminology & criminal justice and psychology, Zambito serves as the external vice president of the Student Government Association (SGA) and a mentor for the Leadership for Life Service Program.

“I decided to come to UIS because I thought it was an amazing university with a lot of potential and room to grow and for myself to grow as a person as well,” he said.

Zambito says being an elected student leader on campus has taught him many lessons about leadership. As external vice president for the SGA, he’s responsible for making sure student’s voices are heard outside of the university, when it comes to higher education funding and other matters that are important to them.

“Being the student’s voice means a lot to me and I’m very proud to have been picked for this position and trusted to carry out the role I’ve been given,” he said. “I’m approached by students, I would say almost daily, talking about some of their concerns, their needs, and their wants.”

Zambito also went on the 2017 Alternative Spring Break volunteer trip where he helped with outdoor eco-restoration projects along the Florida Panhandle Gulf Coast. As part of Leadership for Life, in January 2018, he participated in the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service where he took part in a community forum and volunteered.

“I wanted to get involved in Leadership for Life because of the multiple opportunities to volunteer and help the community,” he said.

The Granite City, Illinois native says he’d like to enter the law enforcement field following graduation from UIS. He hopes to specifically join a special taskforce that works to combat human sex trafficking in Illinois.

“My first semester here at UIS, I took a human identity course where it talked about the victims of human trafficking and it hit me on a personal level and taught me something I could be passionate about stopping,” he said.

Zambito credits UIS for helping him grow his leadership abilities and feels well prepared to make a difference in the world.

“I feel like UIS has taught me to go out help others, help the community and more importantly that it only takes a couple of minutes a day to make a difference.”

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