President for a Day

President for a Day Gabrielle Gehron
Senior Gabrielle Gehron led Widener University on April 23 as the 17th student president.

Senior Gabrielle Gehron experienced what it is like to lead Widener University when she served as the 17th student president in the annual “President for a Day” program.

Gehron had high-level administrative meetings, gave a speech at a luncheon attended by scholarship recipients and generous university donors, and toured a university construction project. She walked away with a new perspective on – and appreciation for – university administration.

It was just so enlightening because I got to see, if there’s an issue that students are struggling with, the administration is probably trying to find a solution to that problem. If there are things that the students really enjoy that are good things about the student experience, there’s probably someone behind that initiative and they’ve worked hard to make sure that it benefits students — student Gabrielle Gehron

Gehron secured the position as president for a day after a competitive application and interview process, which she approached seeking a new perspective on her university education. She will graduate this month having earned both a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in biomedical engineering over four years. She has accepted a job with West Pharmaceutical Services in Eagleview, Pennsylvania, after serving in the company’s Ambassador Summer Internship program last year.

Her jam-packed day as president on April 23 also included a stop at the Graduate Student Research Symposium, and time in the president’s office.

President for a Day Julie E. Wollman
President Wollman attended Gehron's biomedical devices class and senior project team meeting.

“I think that just the fact that Widener is able to have this kind of a day, where you have someone at such a high level switch places with a student shows how willing the university is to get in touch with the students and give students amazing opportunities,” Gehron said.

Wollman, who swapped out her business attire for jeans and a T-shirt, attended Gehron’s senior project team meeting with students and Assistant Professor Amir Amiri, where they reviewed the team’s artificial intelligence project – a voice activated robot programmed to feed people. She also attended a biomedical devices class taught by Associate Professor Anita Singh, and the Graduate Student Research Symposium. She had dinner at UNO Pizzeria & Grill with Gehron’s friends. The day allowed her to trade in her presidential perspective for a student immersion experience.

“President for a Day is a special experience that gives me the opportunity to see Widener classrooms and services from a student perspective. I got to hear what was on the minds of Gabbi’s classmates and friends, and witness their commitment to their education firsthand. This opportunity is a great way to demonstrate Widener’s dedication to leadership training, and my personal commitment to ensuring an outstanding student experience. It’s one of my favorite days of the year,” Wollman said.

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