Student government candidates discuss election platforms

By Jessenya Guerra
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Every academic year, Associated Students (AS) holds elections for the offices of 14 different positions in the California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) student government. This year not all of the positions have candidates for their respective offices. There are only nine positions in AS for which students are running. The positions in the current elections include AS president, vice president (VP) of external affairs, VP of finance, college of arts, humanities, and social sciences senator, college of business senator, college of health sciences and human services senator, college of science senator, diversity and inclusion senator, and sustainability senator.

The following statements are from the candidates running for the 2019-2020 academic year. These statements are to give the CSUMB campus and community a better understanding of who the candidates are and why they are running for office.

President

Ana Gonzalez

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
Fellow otters, my name is Ana Gonzalez and I would like to serve as your president of Associated Students for the 2019-2020 school year. As an environmental studies major and a chicana/o studies minor at CSUMB, I have accumulated skills as a leader, researcher and advocate through my participation in EOP, UROC, KDChi and First Year Leaderships Experiences. Because of this, I believe I represent the values of CSUMB and relate with the different communities that make this university unique.

As the current executive vice president of AS, I am focus on revising our governing documents to ensure we have the student’s interest at heart, as well as ensuring the accountability of our officers to provide a better service and creating a more transparent budget for everyone to see where our money is spent. Through my participation, I would hope to ensure that all students take advantage of the services we offer through AS because every student’s voice on campus makes the student government at CSUMB. As I embark on my last year as an undergrad, I aim to contribute and improve this community. I am honored and eager to serve another year in Associates Students, and make sure every student experience CSUMB to its fullest.

VP of External Affairs

Claire Larson

As the CAHSS Senator, I worked hard to be a strong voice for our campus community and student needs. My past experience in Associated Students has inspired me to continue and advance. At the beginning of my first Associated Students term, I expressed interest to one day hold the position of vice president of external affairs. I attended CSSA, CSUnity, the local candidates forum event and even co-chaired First Year Leadership Council. Besides AS, I interned on a political campaign and for my congressman in Washington D.C. I am also a sister for Delta Omega Rho Multicultural Sorority. My extensive experience makes me a desired candidate.

If I am lucky enough to continue on with AS, my goal would be to update CSUMB students on what is happening CSU wide. I have personally noticed a lack of knowledge within the student body when it comes to what is happening throughout our education system. It is not the fault of our students, but I will take it as my responsibility to find ways to inform them on things that can affect their own school careers. I also would like to have a voter registration fair on National Voter Registration Day. Students would not only be able to register to vote, but ideally, we would have political organizations throughout the community to table. I would also like to increase the lobby corps presence here on campus. I am hoping to earn this incredible opportunity in hopes of bringing change to our campus.

Alexandria Adams

My job as a running candidate is to “woah” you with qualifications and relevant experience to prove myself worthy enough for the position at hand. Before doing so, I’d like to share brief background information about myself and reassure you as to why I am a suitable candidate. Integrity, perseverance and compassion lay at the foundation of my very being. I, Alexandria Adams, am pursuing my bachelors degree in human development and families studies, where I aim to acquire greater knowledge of the biological, psychological and socio-cultural development of humans, while perusing experience in higher education, leadership and legislation.

My objective of running for vice president of external affairs is to obtain direct experience with legislative work in higher education while crafting my leadership qualities. My means of integrity and compassion paired with efficiency and determination will allow me to effectively advocate for the needs, desire and goals of California State University, Monterey Bay student body. One day, I will create policies that ensure every publicly funded K-12 school has a full functioning mental health and wellness clinic, similar to the personal growth and counseling center here on campus. With that being said, my name is Alexandria Adams and I am proud to say that I am a running candidate for vice president of external student affairs.

VP of Finance

Jaspreet Bhardwaj

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
Greetings! My name is Jaspreet Bhardwaj, I’m currently a sophomore and business major. Serving as CSUMB’s vice president of finance and working along with the other AS officers would be an honor because of their continuous pursuit of the betterment of the campus for students and faculty. There are countless involvement opportunities, along with a chance to gain leadership and professional experience, which are some of the many reasons I’d like to apply. I’m task-oriented and always focused on completing the projects at hand. I’m punctual, supportive and diligent.

The main reason I’d like to apply is because I believe in AS’s mission to serve, advocate and represent the student body. I’m currently the business senator and although I have only been in the position for four months, I absolutely love what I do. I have inherited a family in AS, as well as in the campus community. I have developed connections with a few of the clubs, which can enhance the quality of AS because I can serve as a mentor for the upcoming business senator. I have been trained by AS’s best and I am beyond thankful for the knowledge they passed down to me. My previous leadership experience in high school, as well as my newly gained experience as a business senator, along with my passion for this college and each student’s experience qualifies me for this position. I want to strive for the success of all students and continue growing my newfound home. Thank you.

Sustainability Senator

Ethan Quaranta

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
Hi, my name is Ethan Quaranta and I am running to be the next sustainability senator. I am seeking this office as I believe that in such depressing environmental times, it is important to have a strong guiding light. I believe that I can be that strong guiding light due to my various qualifications. I currently serve as an environmental affairs committee member and intern. In high school, I was secretary and eventually vice president of journalism. While involved with both leadership positions, I proved myself to be a reliable and passionate leader, as I met all deadlines and never missed any meetings. Throughout my time in journalism, I fine-tuned my communication skills. During my time in journalism, I started up a video news program from the ground up. Also, I was great at making bonds with local companies/businesses, while selling ads for the newspaper. While journalism is of course not sustainability, I believe that many of the skills required are the same. As a member and intern of the EAC, I have learned how to adapt the skills I learned in journalism to a sustainability context.

  • Some of my goals as sustainability senator would be to:
  • Expand access/awareness of OtterWare
  • Expand access to bike covers and promote walking/biking/scootering/etc.
  • Start a campus garden and an accompanying compost program
  • Ensure that campus planning has plenty of green space including many native plants as well as more trees for carbon sequestration
  • Expand access to garbage, recycling and compost bins on campus

Diversity and Inclusion Senator

Dawood Kazi

I am running for the position of Diversity and Inclusion senator. I want to join Associated Students as I want to be the voice and connection for those who are underrepresented and serve as a resource and a support system. I hope to intrigue and inspire different communities at CSUMB to come together, and I will do the best I can with this life to be of use to others. I aspire to turn disabilities into superpowers by creating an enabling environment and facilitating skill set to harvest human energy as a socially responsible citizen of the world. This pursuit is initiated with my learnings in the realm of kinesiology and ultimately qualifying as a prosthetic professional.

As a full-time student in my sophomore year at CSUMB, I am employed in different jobs including A’viands, as well as in the international programs as a student assistant. I am people sensitive, as I have worked with students from diverse backgrounds. I am also a responsible custodian of important documents and records, as I insure confidentiality of private and personal information. Currently I am the vice president for the Student Awareness for Disability Empowerment (SADE) club. I am a third-generation high school graduate from Aitchison College, Lahore, in Pakistan, a school with a legacy of more than 180 years with a campus sprawling over 200 acres and an alumni consisting of the current prime minister and past heads of state, ministers and generals.

CB Senator

Krystal Rojas

My name is Krystal Rojas and I am a second-year business major from Watsonville. I am running for College of Business senate. I want to be a part of AS so that I can help those in my college and be a voice for those who need one. With AS, I can serve my fellow peers and help them achieve their academic goals. I want to help improve the College of Business in any way that I possibly can.

As senate, I will ensure that the students’ opinions about the College of Business are addressed and acknowledged. I aspire to be an advocate for the students within this department by voicing their concerns and suggestions. My primary goal is to represent the students and to make sure that their voices are heard, that their voice matters. With my past experience in student government, I know I am capable of working well with students, as well as professors. I take my education and the education of my peers very seriously, and will spend time getting to know them and their needs. Together with my peers, I hope to improve the College of Business for my and future generations.

CS Senator

Antonio Hernandez

Hello, my name is Antonio Hernandez and I am a second-year molecular biology major. I am running for the Associated Students College of Science senator for the 2019-2020 academic year. I am currently in the position and running for a second term. I want to continue working with the science dean to address issues within the college, network with different AS/ASI to try and incorporate events they do for their college and implement into our college, work on running the AS Capstone Grant and Legacy Scholarship, and work with the career fair center to bring in more professions from different fields.

Cobey Lenair Davis

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
Hello, my name is Cobey Lenair Davis and I am a current first-year freshman here at California State University, Monterey Bay. I am a mathematics major with a concentration in subject matter preparation program. This spring, I am running for the College of Science senator position through Associated Students. I am currently apart of First Year Leadership Council, College of Science Dean’s Council, POWER Peer Youth Educator Training, as well as Mathematics Student Teacher at Seaside High School for Integrated Mathematics 2 and 3 Courses.

My purpose to run is to create improvements for the students and faculty, not only in the science department, but as well as around campus based on what’s better for everyone. When taking the position, my goal is to be the voice that can fight for change that students, staff and faculty want due to constraints that affect the way that department runs. As senator, I will be the bridge that bring the communication between everyone in the College of Science from all student to staff and faculty for a better inclusive department on and off campus. Being apart of Associated Students will provide me skills to be a better leader, mentor and supportive student that everyone can look up to.

CHSHS Senator

Rebecca Harbison

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
Hello fellow otters! My name is Rebecca Harbison. I am a second-year kinesiology major with a concentration in exercise science, and I am running for re-election for the College of Health Science and Human Services Senator. I have been involved with many aspects of our lovely campus. I’ve been an otter days leader, I’m a tour guide for our school, I’ve been a radio personality for otter media and apart of the amazing women’s rugby club on campus. I believe I am still qualified for this position because of my involvement on campus, my past leadership experience from student government in high school, and my transparency and open communication with students in my position currently.

This past year, I served as the CHSHS senator. In my position, I have revamped our dean events by including department chairs and having a more casual setting for students to feel comfortable talking to our administration, did classroom presentations alongside my dean to show students the resources our college offers, put on the second annual self care fair for students to explore the different aspects of self-care and helped advocate for dairy-free ice cream in the Otter Express. If I am re-elected into this position, I want to continue connecting students with administration through different kinds of dean events, revamp my idea of a social connecting page for our college by asking students for ideas and continue to advocate for allergen-free foods in eateries on campus.

Kayla Ventus

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
Hi, my name is Kayla Ventus and I am a first-year kinesiology major with a concentration of exercise sciences with intentions on becoming a cardiopulmonary physiologist. I am running for AS Senator of CHSHS because I want the students within this college to feel heard. I want all the needs and wants of students to be voiced out, and never feel as if they’re unheard. I want to be the one students go to when they feel something isn’t going right. As senator, I plan to listen to all opinions and voice them over to administration. Being senator of CHSHS, I would not only voice any opinions to administration for students in this college, but for all students of CSUMB.

CAHSS Senator

Christian Chan

Student government candidates discuss election platforms
AS is an excellent program that California State University Monterey Bay (CSUMB) supports. It offers students many opportunities to be apart of the program like giving back to the food pantry. I feel that the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (CAHSS) Senator position will be an excellent fit for me and I will be a great asset to AS. I am a brother of Omega Delta Phi Fraternity Inc. I am the current Service Chair, which requires me to have excellent communication skills, planning event skills, and finding ways to help my fraternity grow while also giving back to the community. I understand the hard work and effort that goes into effective management of the AS program and how important it is for AS to achieves its goals.

The position I currently hold in Omega Delta Phi Fraternity gives me the skills which can transition over to promoting and committing to the AS program. As Service Chair I have reached out to community members to get more involved in our community to give back. Daily I am looking for new opportunities to improve my fraternity and to help it achieve its goal of giving back to the community. Some examples include the Sea Otter Classic, Salinas Air Show, and beach clean up to name a few. My experience as a brother of Omega Delta Phi Fraternity and current Service Chair gives me the skills and opportunities necessary to be a successful Senator of AS.

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