Meet Our Student Bloggers - Spencer Rada

By Spencer Rada

Spencer Rada is a Political Science major and Transnational Crime minor at Norwich University. He is active in the Student Government Association on campus and Norwich's Leadership Academies. Keep reading to learn more about Spencer's exciting opportunities as a highly involved Norwich student!

Spencer Rada portrait.

Hello! My name is Spencer Rada, and I'm currently a sophomore at Norwich University majoring in Political Science. I can't wait to give you a look into my world – from my interests and lifestyle to the reasons why I chose Norwich.

I've always been interested in political systems, elections, how our government works, and the impact that it has on society. This interest has led me to pursue political science as my major. Norwich University, with its rich history and commitment to producing future leaders, provided an obvious choice for me; knowing they had a strong political science program sealed the deal. The unique blend of academic excellence, leadership development programs, and a strong sense of community made Norwich the perfect place to foster my passion for politics. Norwich’s small student body also provided an environment in which I feel I can stand out in.

Photo of campus green and the barracks.
Photo by Spencer Rada.

A typical day in my life as a Norwich student as a sophomore is quite busy. It is filled with classes, political research for my apprenticeship and future research project, club activities, and involvement in student government.

My day usually begins with a quick breakfast at the Wise Campus Center, where I catch up on the day's news and discuss current events with friends. The political climate is ever-changing, and staying informed is crucial for someone with my academic and extracurricular interests. The large chow hall – as students on campus call it – provides a great environment to sit with friends and chat about our classes and experiences.

After breakfast, I head to my first class, transnational crime, which is a course working toward my minor in transnational crime. The engaging discussions and thought-provoking lectures keep me vigilant on what is happening in the world, which also keys me in on some current events, whether it be in the Middle East, Europe, or the United States. Norwich's commitment to providing a comprehensive education ensures that I not only understand political theories, but also their practical applications in different global contexts, across different fields of study, and with a mindset that having a background in many subjects makes a good leader and better citizen.

Norwich's emphasis on student involvement in governance allows the Student Government Association to have a real impact on campus life. Recently, we entered our election season, and we have a wide variety of candidates running for office such as president, vice president, treasurer, and the class senators. The student government provides students with activities, events, and initiatives that aim toward the betterment of the physical and mental health of the community.

In between classes and student government duties, I find time for one of my passions: pool. The Billiards Club at Norwich

Snowy campus photo of the Alumni Bridge looking toward the barracks.
Photo by Spencer Rada.

 provides a relaxed and enjoyable environment to unwind and socialize. It's a great way to meet people from different majors who share a common interest in the game and provides a group of people who wish to show off their skills in tournaments and general gameplay. The two pool tables in the Wise Campus Center’s Mill provide a great space to meet with students from both cadet and civilian lifestyles, as well as those with different majors and cultural backgrounds, whether you are a first-time player or a pool shark.

Another highlight is that Norwich University has recently developed two leadership academies: the Global Leadership Academy and the Government Service Leadership Academy. These academies offer specialized programs to enhance leadership skills and aim to provide contacts with alumni while working to build the network of students. Being a part of it has been instrumental in shaping my approach to leadership. The hands-on experiences and mentorship opportunities have been invaluable in preparing me for the challenges that lie ahead.

Norwich also offers plenty of other opportunities to get involved. As the president of the Political Science Club, I am actively involved in organizing events, guest lectures, and discussions related to political issues. It's a platform for like-minded individuals to come together, exchange ideas, and deepen their understanding of political science beyond the classroom.

I work as a research apprentice in the evenings where I assist a professor with a project on presidential rhetoric, priorities, and judicial appointments. This hands-on experience not only complements my academic studies, but also allows me to contribute to ongoing research within the department.

Choosing Norwich has been a pivotal decision in my academic journey, and I am grateful for the opportunities and experiences that have shaped me into the leader I am today.