A 20-year-old Black Harvard University student just made history. Mississippi-native Noah Harris announced that he won the election for student body president on November 12, making him the first Black male student to hold the position.
Harris was elected by Harvard’s Undergraduate Council earlier this month and said that he doesn’t take the accomplishment lightly given the events that have transpired in the past year and the conversations on race relations within the United States. He is currently majoring in government and co-chairs the Undergraduate Council’s Black Caucus on his campus.
“Especially with everything that went on this summer with the death of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, all the protests that went on in this moment of racial reckoning in this country,” said Harris in an interview with the Boston Globe. “This is a major statement by the Harvard student body to entrust a Black man with such an unprecedented moment in its history.”
Harris and his running mate, Jenny Gan, ran a campaign that focused on highlighting areas such as diversity and inclusion, resources for health and wellness like expanding the current Headspace program for students, and strategies to improve the quality of life for all students attending the Ivy League institution.
Harris, who hails from Hattiesburg, also shared the news of his victory on his personal Instagram page, expressing how he hoped to do some good with his new title.
“It’s hard for me to put into words how grateful I am to be elected Harvard Student Body President with my partner in crime Jenny Gan!!” he wrote in a caption. “I will work tirelessly to make all of you proud over the next year.”