Trevor, second from right, and other ONE volunteers from Carthage College with Sen. Tammy Baldwin (WI).
Congratulations to Trevor Wiles, our ONE Member of the Month for February. An inspiring activist and advocate, Trevor, a college student at Carthage College, is one of our most motivated and enthusiastic members. I had a chance to interview him this month about his involvement with ONE, the ONE Campus Challenge chapter at Carthage, and what has him so excited about advocacy.
Tell us a little bit about yourself!
I am a sociology student at Carthage College, graduating in May. I am currently applying to law schools around the Midwest, and am hoping to balance my legal career and community service for the rest of my life. I am heavily involved on campus. My passion is to innovate so that organizations can contribute more to society.
How did you get involved with ONE?
I got involved with ONE my freshman year after seeing a friend of mine wearing a ONE T-shirt. After that encounter, I was hooked, and soon after was put in touch with ONE’s regional field director for the Great Lakes region. I was quickly thrown into advocacy when he invited me to go to a town hall meeting with him to see Paul Ryan.
What are ONE members at Carthage College like?
ONE at Carthage members are the most fantastic and diverse group of people I have ever met. They are passionate, and know how to use their voice to advocate for the things that matter in the world. I am constantly pushing them, and they are constantly enabling the organization to grow. It has gotten to the point that I believe that ONE at Carthage will continue long after I am gone. In fact, I am sure that they will do more with this organization than I can ever hope to. They are truly amazing.
What is the most challenging thing about being an activist for ONE and our issues?
The most challenging thing about being an advocate for ONE is trying to always push my group to be innovative. I believe that ONE at Carthage can do anything, and as such I always want us to do better. We may have won the ONE Campus Challenge in the fall, but there is so much more that we can do. Our goal is to continue to raise the bar and to push the campus program as a whole to do better.
Who inspires you?
My team, and the national team at ONE inspire me. The power of youth voices is so profound to me, so it is amazing to work with a group of passionate students willing to use those voices. The national team is so supportive and creative, which gives me (and my team) strength to continue our efforts.
What else do you do in your spare time?
I balance my love for ONE’s work with classes, my fraternity, Phi Kappa Sigma, my work as a supplemental instructor and research assistant, my student ambassadorship, my involvement as President of Pre Law organizations at Carthage, and various other activities. I believe in serving my community in every way possible, because I know that I have skills and abilities that allow me to give back. In my free time I enjoy too much Netflix and a good cigar.
What has been your favorite experience with ONE?
My favorite experience with ONE has been seeing my chapter grow into the powerhouse that I believe it to be. It stuns me to realize that the chapter was founded just a few years ago with just Katie Niemeyer and myself. I think of my chapter almost as a small business. We have left the “garage of our parents” and have moved onto the stage in which we are at our “first office.” At least that is the metaphor I have been using with my team.
Big thank you to Trevor for all the amazing work that he does for ONE. Want to nominate someone for the next Member of the Month? Email Malaka at [email protected] with the subject line, “Member of the Month.”