The student government general assembly met in the Sykes Chapel to hear from and learn more about the candidates running for office for next year, this past Tuesday night. Each candidate was allowed a short amount of time to say who they are and what qualifies them for a position in student government.
The main event of the meeting was the presidential candidate speeches and the debate that followed. First up was Jimmy Uteg III and his running mate Michael DeMaria. Uteg and DeMaria made clear that the primary platform of their campus was something they called “#userfriendlyUT,” a program aimed to bring convenience to the lives of UT students. It includes extended pool, computer lab, and library hours, ATMs and laundry card machines in every dorm, and a dining services app.
According to Uteg, another major part of their campaign is something they call “organization accountability.” This part of their platform is centered on promoting school spirit, and organizational outreach.
“If students feel like they’re not at home here at UT then it’s probably because they’re not involved enough,” Uteg said. “When you’re a part of an organization then you feel like you’re involved on campus. School spirit isn’t always just about sports.”
Uteg ended his speech with an open invitation to the general assembly, that if he was elected, they could stop by anytime to see what how they are using the SG budget to greater benefit organizations.
Up next was Sarah Daniels and her running mate Matthew Hartford. Daniels began with her promise to bridge the gap between Greek life and student government, to make a more coherent student body. To further this idea, Daniels and Hartford want to include at least one Greek life representative on their cabinet. Daniels wants to encourage people in the student body outside of the NCAA sports to be excited to go cheer on their friends and fellow Spartans, and use the student government budget to promote school spirit at all organizational events.
Hartford even referenced the new Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), stating that their goal is to “implement a bi-semester report from the colleges about the opportunities offered to students, so that when students graduate they can have at least one example of real life experience on their resume.” Daniels finished her speech by stating “Everything starts with education.” She concluded that if elected, she will educate the general assembly on what goes on behind closed doors in the senate, and make it known what responsibilities each student has.
“I think that more students will be aware and want to get more involved,” Daniels said.
Voting for the student government elections started Tuesday night at 8 p.m. and ends this Sunday. All students can log on to OrgSync with their spartan domain to vote.
Lauren Richey can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org