Dot’s Skipper leading way on the College Council at Williams

Lisa Hagen, Special to the Reporter
Mar. 1, 2012

Peter SkipperPeter SkipperA Dorchester native and Williams College junior, Peter Skipper, was elected co-president of the school’s College Council in campus voting held two weeks ago. He and his electoral counterpart, Krista Pickett, also a junior, they will be representing the entire student body in college affairs.

Skipper and Pickett took about 95 percent of the vote, topping juniors Darryl Brown and Kevin O’Connell, 1128 to 152, as about 60 percent of Williams students voted, according to Skipper, who is majoring in political science with a concentration in leadership studies.

Skipper, 21, who said he was “overwhelmed by the strong community feel” at Williams when he first toured the campus, is also involved in other organizations including College Dems, which he founded last fall, the Committee on Undergraduate Life, and Springstreeters, an all-male a cappella group.

Born and raised on Bellflower Street, Skipper moved with his family to their current home on Mayhew Street when he was 10. Growing up in Dorchester, he attended Boston Renaissance Charter School, Boston Latin School, and Boston College High School. He briefly attended Boston Archdiocesan Choir School in Cambridge before going to the Latin School.

His parents are both educators in Dorchester. His mother is the headmaster of the TechBoston Academy and his father teachers at BC High.

“I have strong community ties to Dorchester,” Skipper said, noting that he swam for years at the community’s Boys and Girls Club. “I plan on moving back when I graduate.”

Before running for co-president, Skipper had a long involvement in College Council, running for several positions. In the fall of his sophomore year, he won the Neighborhood College Council position, which represents a collection of dorms on campus. He ran for class representative the next semester, and when he lost the election, he called it a “learning experience.”

“It is kind of a cheesy story about how I got involved in College Council,” he said. “My friends and I were working on Deval Patrick’s campaign and I wondered what it would be like to work on my own campaign so I ran for a position in the fall of my sophomore year.”

As for his new responsibilities at Williams, Skipper said the co-presidents have three major things to focus on. They represent the student body as the “official voice,” allocate all of the money for funding student groups, and appoint all students who are on college committees. He said they distribute $400,000 to on-campus groups every year.

“I really enjoy working on College Council and we’re actually able to make a difference and improve student life,” said Skipper. “I have been friends my co-president, Krista, since freshman year and we work well together and are very compatible.”

Skipper acknowledged that his job is going to be a challenge, but he is looking forward to it. “My co-president and I realize that this is a huge undertaking,” he said. “One of the things we highlighted in our campaign is our goal to be more accessible by publishing minutes online and making sure the student body can access the money allocated for clubs.”