Erica Hadley ’17 is an international studies major from Snohomish, WA, who serves as the president of the Social Regulations Council (SRC) at Rhodes. The SRC is an elected board of students committed to maintaining Rhodes’ values of diversity and inclusion on an everyday basis. On top of her leadership with SRC, Erica devotes her time to Relay for Life, Model United Nations, Kappa Delta, and Sigma Iota Rho, an international studies honor society. In addition, Erica is a peer advocate and has studied abroad twice.
How did you choose Rhodes College?
I received a postcard from Rhodes about a week before coming to Memphis for spring break while in high school. Why I was coming to Memphis from Seattle for a week, I have no clue. When I got the postcard and saw the photos I mentioned it to my dad, and he agreed to visit the college. We drove around campus and I was in awe of how beautiful the buildings were and the southern charm that the individuals I met embodied. When I received my acceptance letter, I already knew that I wanted to spend my next four years growing and learning at Rhodes College.
Why did you decide to be a part of SRC? What about SRC was important to you?
I initially decided to run for SRC because I wanted to get more involved on our campus and I saw an immense value in the role of the organization. I think it is incredibly special that we are peers evaluating other peers. I have seen students be extremely considerate and receptive to the concept that they are not being disciplined by the ‘higher ups,’ but by students who understand their circumstances and to whom they do not make excuses.
What are your goals in that organization?
The Social Regulations Council has a meaningful responsibility to decide what we find reflective of the Standards of the Rhodes Community, and how we can best assist students who have committed violations to grow into an embodiment of the standards. Our organization is obliged to set a standard for the community in terms of acceptable behavior, which means that one of my goals is to see the council as a whole and as individuals always being reflective of our opportunities to lead by example. Another goal is to see our organization make our presence more visible to the student body.
What has a surprised you most during your time at Rhodes?
I have been so inspired by the resilience and the passion of certain communities at Rhodes. Like at any institution, the community has gone through trials and tribulations where we have had to reflect upon what values are truly essential. Throughout my time, I have seen the college administration progress towards an increased awareness of what values they would like to endorse and instill in their students, and I believe that great strides have been made on the institutional and the individual level.
How do you see your involvement in SRC impacting your future outside of Rhodes?
The values that the Social Regulations Council seeks to uphold are practical not only throughout undergraduate education, but as broad guidelines to life. Promoting respect for one another, encouraging safe actions, and taking responsibility for one’s own actions are ideals that are capable of bettering any community. After having spent so much time and effort defending these values at Rhodes, I believe that they will stay with me for life.
Compiled by Katherine Hancock '19