Army National Guard specialist, 28
By C.J. Tavera
District 3 candidate Joschua Kristofer Harvey-Beres is the youngest of three candidates seeking the trustee position, but he is a contender on campus issues.
Harvey-Beres said what makes him the best candidate for District 3 is his military background in the National Guard and Air Force.
He said he has a passion and dedication to help citizens improve their lives.
Harvey-Beres said it’s important for trustees to be available to engage directly with students and faculty, and suggests an open office policy to improve communication.
As a trustee, Harvey-Beres is interested in funding workforce certificate programs and liberal arts programs equally and keeping college education affordable.
“I would try to find a way to increase work opportunities for students while also increasing what the college can offer academically for students,” he said.
Harvey-Beres looks to the state for assistance in keeping the cost of college affordable.
“I plan to engage with several state legislators to see how we can get funding.”
He believes there are ways to get state funds allocated to continue offering quality classes at an affordable price.
He noticed several areas in this city that are in need of affordable education.
“A quality education is what helps you better serve your community.”
Having come from a lower-income family, he knows firsthand what it’s like to struggle.
He has more tangible ideas on how to better use funds initially allocated for training and disciplinary programs.
For example, he would look at ways to support the student veteran population, helping them with costs for campus room and board, a topic raised during the recent groundbreaking of the campus’ new Victory Center that will serve the military student population.
Harvey-Beres does not agree with a policy that limits access to the citizens-to-be-heard sections of board meetings.
“The public has every right to have an influence on how the college is run,” he said. “This is a community college.”
Harvey-Beres is also not a fan of campus carry for the Alamo Colleges.
He supports a person’s Second Amendment right, but said, “Weapons do not belong in the classroom.”
How it is managed is important, he said. Having a highly trained police force and a strategic plan in place is a must.
He wants to work with local businesses to ensure businesses are not trying to take advantage of their working relationship with the colleges.
He stressed the primary mission of this college system is to help students access higher education and prepare them for the real world.
“I don’t want to sit on a board where these businesses feel they have an advantage over the school because of helping with certain programs,” he said.