It’s safe to assume there is a lot of maroon laundry in the Kraus family’s Dallas home. Hudson Kraus ’24 is Texas A&M University student body president, and his two brothers are also current students. Their parents are — you guessed it — also Aggies.
“It’s definitely a family tradition,” says Kraus, who is leading Aggies on behalf of the Student Government Association (SGA) for the 2023-24 academic year.
Kraus previously served as president of the Texas A&M Interfraternity Council (IFC), the governing body of all fraternities on campus. During his term he led the creation of a $26,000 scholarship endowment fund, among other accomplishments, and was also a member of SGA’s mental health task force.
Now in his senior year, Kraus is studying business management and pre-law. He took time to share his thoughts on campus life, priorities for his term and a bit about one of his favorite topics: Aggie Football.
What was your involvement in campus life prior to assuming your current role?
When I came to A&M, I decided to join a fraternity, Kappa Alpha Order, which was also my dad’s fraternity. It’s been really great to be able to share that with him. Then I found out about the Interfraternity Council and I ran for president and ending up getting that position. That experience opened my mind to what else there is at the university. Fraternities can be insular environments where we stay in our bubble or our sphere of influence. But being involved in IFC broadened my understanding of what the university is and how to serve students from all different kinds of backgrounds. Fraternity life was everything for me. There are 1,800 members here at A&M and sometimes we get a bad rap because of the actions of a few. Part of the reason I ran for these positions was to change some of the narratives about what it means to be a fraternity man here at Texas A&M. We are involved, we know what it means to be an Aggie, and hopefully we can take some other people on that journey with us. And, of course, all the traditions: Silver Taps, Muster, Big Event – there are so many ways to get involved.
What are your some of the priorities for your term as student body president?
First off, I really want to answer the question, ‘What does student government do?’ The answer is ‘a lot!’ But Texas A&M is a large ship and steering change can be slow. If we keep these efforts going over time, we compound them and we can get a lot of things done. One thing we’re committed to is providing every student at the school access to free Scantron testing forms. Last semester, we provided 6,700 scantrons during final exams, in collaboration with the Office of the Provost. Next are virtual student IDs. Students are ready for those to be on their phones where they are most accessible. It will take a while due to the complexities involved, and we’re working on a timeline for when these things can happen. We want to keep pushing for mental health and wellness, making students aware of the resources available to them. And one of our biggest priorities this year is Open Educational Resources, which provides free online textbooks and course materials to students. That is so critical to student success. Those are just a few of the many things we are working on.
What do you love about leading the 12th Man?
I think what we have here is very rare and special. It’s difficult to get people to join together collectively, especially now in this disconnected world that we live in; Zoom meetings and social media can keep us from getting together. That’s what I think is so special about the 12th Man is that you take 75,000 or so Aggies and unite us with traditions, football games, service projects. Everyone who attends A&M, you’re an Aggie no matter where you’re from, regardless of your identity or anything else.
As a fervent Aggie Football fan, what are your hopes for the coming season?
Many people have asked me that and I think it’s one of the things that’s really funny about being here at A&M: no matter what the final score says, we never lose our faith. Sure, we were 5-7 last year, but I guarantee you there’s going to be a majority of fans saying this year ‘we’re winning the national championship.’ It’s that eternal optimism that I love about us. From everything I’ve heard, we’ve got a really great team and of course I’m going to say we could go all the way. But even if we can get a 10-2 season, I would love that. Gig ‘em Aggies!