The lone ticket running for positions on the 2018-19 SRSGA executive board held an open forum Tuesday during common hour to present their platform and address student concerns. Presidential candidate Dallas Kline began the event with an address for all those in attendance, specifically highlighting the relationship she hopes to have with incoming University President Dr. William Behre.
“With both Dr. Behre and I entering next year as respective presidents, we’re both going to be learning and growing at the same time,” Kline said. “I think it’s all really exciting. I believe that he will be true to his word when it comes to student success and transparency. When I meet with him every month and report back to the students, we’ll be working towards building an administration that works best for SRU students.”
The OneSRU ticket is composed of Kline, Chadwick Burdick (VP of Campus Outreach), Logan Tupper (VP of Finance), Nicole Dunlop (VP of Internal Affairs), and Kennedy Moore (VP of Diversity and Inclusion). Elizabeth Hernandez, not a part of the OneSRU ticket, is running for VP of Student and Academic Affairs and shared the stage with the OneSRU running mates. Each candidate offered a vision of what their committee hopes to achieve over the next academic year.
A strong emphasis was placed on the newly formed position of VP of Diversity and Inclusion and the reformation of the Social Justice Committee. In addition to expanding the committee, Kennedy laid out some of her goals for future of the position.
“Now that there is a vice president position tied to the Social Justice Committee, it carries a lot more weight in the university,” Kennedy said. “Serving on the committee last year, I learned that there are a lot of groups on this campus that don’t have a voice. I think its very important that we emphasize that while learning more about other cultures, communities, and diverse groups on campus.”
Senators Hernandez and Burdick also spoke about the importance of being inclusive of all students through assisting the Social Justice Committee in their respective roles. For Hernandez, she sees her role as VP of Student and Academic Affairs as directly related with diversity and inclusion.
“This area was previously under the control of student and academic affairs and sort of branched off of that position,” Hernandez said. “Because my committee will focus primarily on the academic side, I foresee the position dealing with more diversity and academics with Kennedy dealing with more social diversity. Once the two link together, we can work together and jointly address issues that are important to students.”
From the point of view of his position, Burdick views outreach as an issue that needs to be addressed for the Social Justice Committee and new VP spot. Burdick views his title of VP of Campus Outreach as a way to spread awareness as a new administration takes over at SRU.
“I think this is a great time to address the problem of outreach with social justice that has been brought up in the past,” Burdick said. “Among many new initiatives I hope to implement, bringing more outreach to the Social Justice Committee is important to me.”
Presidential candidate Kline was asked about what she thought about only one ticket for students to consider when elections start on April 11. Kline expressed some disappointment that there wasn’t more interest in serving on the executive board.
“I was definitely a little disheartened that no one wanted to be in the same position that all of us are in now,” Kline said. “We’re going to continue to grow student government and make known all the services that we provide so something like this doesn’t occur again.”
The recent issue of current Parliamentarian Brennan Smith not completing required office hours and possible reform of that policy was also discussed by the candidates. Senator Tupper expressed interest in revisiting the issue, but was not yet ready to commit to revising the policy.
“I’m a policy-based guy,” Tupper said. “What the policy says is the standard I hold myself to. When it comes to changing the policy, I’m just not sure I’m confident enough to make that decision. It is something I will be looking into moving forward as an e-board member.”
SGA elections will open up on Wednesday, April 11 at 8:00 a.m.