When Alaina Stohler, BS’26, came to Kelley Indianapolis, she had three goals: become a resident assistant (RA), complete I-Core early, and become president of the Kelley Student government by her junior year. As of the second semester of her freshman year, she has accomplished all three.
Alaina is a double major in accounting and finance in the Kelley Undergraduate Program with a pre-law track to IU McKinney School of Law. She’s also an honors student and a Chancellor’s Scholar, a distinction representing the top student in each school.
Recently, Alaina was elected by her peers to serve as the President of the Kelley Student Government (KSG), which is the voice and leadership of the undergraduate student body. KSG collaborates with university administration to enhance the student experience.
Leadership has come naturally to her after serving as the president of her high school’s chapter of the National Honor Society and being involved with the Business Professionals of America (BPA). Alaina’s older brother is also an IUPUI student who participated in BPA, which helped inspire her to follow in his footsteps.
During Bridge Week, the official start of the fall semester for incoming freshmen, Alaina had the opportunity to begin working as a front desk assistant at the Kelley School. She also took on the role as student government secretary. Once she joined KSG, she quickly noticed a trend among the leadership.
“In my first meeting this past fall, I realized every single person on the board was a senior. This meant that next year, everyone will have graduated,” she said. “I decided then and there I wanted to be president so I can learn by leading.”
Alaina officially assumed the role of president at the end of April, and she is focused on positioning KSB as a leader among student groups. She plans to begin with building KSG’s reputation amongst students to raise awareness.
“I want us to become more well-known and be involved with our students from the very beginning of their time here. For example, I want to be involved in Bridge Week and then speak at the Chancellor’s Academic Honors Convocation, which is a celebration of the outstanding achievements by IUPUI faculty, staff, and students. I want us to be included in major events throughout the year. And I want to play a bigger role in what is going on inside the different organizations because each of us in KSG oversees more than 10 organizations. But the student groups don’t always know who we are, and that needs to change,” Alaina said.
Diversifying and being approachable is also a big priority because Alaina wants all students to be able to share concerns or opportunities for the student government group to help.
Alaina plans to add more forward-thinking to KSG. She hopes to add more members into KSG earlier in their time at Kelley so they can mentor incoming classes, prepare for leadership transitions sooner, and be a friend and welcoming resource to those high school seniors considering Kelley. Alaina says the best advice for students wanting to get the most out of their time at Kelley is to get involved early with the clubs and groups that interest them, so early introductions to KSG can be helpful. Alaina also wants to move KSG elections to a calendar year, which means elections would occur in December instead of at the end of the spring semesters.
Outgoing KSG president Logan Clark, BS’23, knows he’s leaving the organization in qualified hands.
“Alaina exhibits a tremendous amount of drive, both as a student and a leader on campus. It makes me very proud to see the organization handed to new leadership with its own set of initiatives and leadership styles. I have full confidence that Alaina will lead the executive team with great skill and passion,” Logan said. “It has been my greatest honor to lead KSG this past year, and I will forever be proud of the work that the team has accomplished.”
Over the summer, Alaina intends to stay busy working in the Kelley front office, joining a housing peer mentorship program, planning events with the Kelly Honors Advisory Board, helping the Regatta Steering Committee prep for the 2023 Regatta, and, of course, developing fall events with KSG.
Alaina plans to complete I-Core early during her sophomore year and start studying for the LSATs during her junior year. She hopes to take the exam by the summer before her senior year.
“I’m on the Pathway to Law Program through the School of Liberal Arts, which leads to enrolling at IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law once I graduate. I want to use both degrees together to accomplish something big in business law. Kelley helps me stand out in the law school application pool.”
After law school, Alaina’s considering practicing tax or real estate law but, as a history buff, she also enjoys constitutional law. Through the pathway program, she was paired with a Patent attorney who introduced her to the Sagamore Inn of Court, a forum where young attorneys join seasoned lawyers and judges to meet and discuss ethical issues relating to the practice of law. At a recent event, Alaina networked with attorneys, judges, and law students spanning a variety of expertise and backgrounds. These experiences are why she chose IU Indianapolis and hopes it will set up her for future success.
“I love being in the city, and it was one of the main reasons I chose IU Indianapolis. Everything is located here, including all the major law firms. I’ve already made countless connections,” she said.