I have talked with many of you now that the campaigns have ended and the votes have been cast. While some of you saw the campaign cycle of the past few weeks as an annoyance, I was pleased to hear how many of you see how good the election process is for GW and its students. Since the start of campaigning in early February, our campus has been alive with debate over campus issues and the importance of participating in student life.
The election season has brought to the forefront some of our school’s greatest student leaders, and all of their ideas on how to make our school a better place. While the final results may disappoint some and thrill others, in the end, elections are not about winners and losers, they are about ideas and people.
I want to make sure that those people stay involved and keep that healthy debate alive. I call upon everyone who ran or worked in any campaign for any office to stay involved in the Student Association. Keep bringing your ideas up, and keep fighting for what you think will make the SA the best it can be. Our job next year is to move beyond the personal divisions that this election season may have created and work hard for the people we all ran to serve in the first place: the students of GW.
One of the most important debates of the campaign centered on the concept of the SA itself. Through talking with many of you, as well as debating my fellow candidates, it has become clear that for the SA to survive, the organization must make substantial changes.
Most students feel left out of the current SA. They cannot identify their student leaders, much less what those leaders have done for them. Over the coming months, I hope those with complaints will come forward and participate in an open debate that will be the cornerstone of my presidency.
From my very first day in office, I will institute ideas that I feel will make the SA better. I hope to begin a weekly SA column in The Hatchet, so you know what your student government is doing for you. I will hold presidential and cabinet office hours at the Mount Vernon Campus and elsewhere. Next year, I will appoint a freshman to my cabinet to make sure a completely new voice is heard. Those are a few of the changes I can make as president, but just one person or one idea simply cannot solve the problem; many voices and ideas are needed.
I am excited about the changes and new faces we will be bringing to the SA – for without change, there can be no progress. I am excited about working with a diverse and talented student Senate. But most of all, I am grateful and humbled by the overwhelming support I received from all of my supporters throughout the campaign and from the voters at the polls.
I will work hard everyday next year to make sure I do not let you down. But I cannot make things better without you. Let’s join together next year and make our school the best it can be.
-The writer, a junior, is SA president-elect.