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December 13, 2016
Semester Highlight #1: Interviewing Tim Kaine three days before the presidential election.
No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, the 2016 election was gripping. This election had a special connection to the Richmond campus, as Sen. Tim Kaine, the Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee, taught at Richmond's Jepson School of Leadership Studies as recently as 2013.
I was lucky enough to earn an exclusive interview with Kaine for the student newspaper on Saturday, Nov. 5, just three days before the general election. I had 5 minutes.
What do you ask the man vying to be a heartbeat away from the presidency? My head whirled at how to approach the conversation. I ultimately weaved in the class that Kaine taught at Richmond titled “Leadership Breakthroughs."
“Leadership is most often needed to push organizations and causes toward steady improvement and incremental change,” Kaine wrote in his syllabus for the course. “But, there are moments when leadership is needed to produce big leaps forward, dramatically changing what came before. This course will explore the personal traits, organizational circumstances, social conditions, accidents of fate and timing that can lead to monumental change.”
In addition to Kaine's response to allegations involving the FBI, I spoke with Kaine about how the “Leadership Breakthroughs” concept would influence his time in the White House if he was elected. (Spoiler alert: He wasn’t) If you want to get political, you can read about what Kaine had to say about leadership breakthroughs and the election here.
At the end of our interview, Kaine went out of his way to praise UR and talk about how much he enjoyed his time here.
“It’s a wonderful institution and things like the Jepson school and the undergraduate business program have attracted students from all over the country,” Kaine told me. “It’s a great school.”
I'm always hungry, usually talking, and an occasionally funny senior double majoring in Journalism and Leadership Studies with a minor in Business Administration. I am the Vice-President of Academic Affairs for the Richmond College Student Government Association, an Associate Editor with The Collegian, the student newspaper, and a brother of Theta Chi Fraternity. This past summer I interned for the Washington Redskins official website, Redskins.com. I am probably procrastinating as you read this.