SA candidates talk issues

There will be a debate in the Ott Auditorium at 7 p.m. Tuesday. The public is welcome to  attend.


Voting takes place online from 8 p.m. Tuesday until noon on Friday.


Voting is online.


Question 1:

In your opinion, what are the top three priorities of

Student Association?

Ted: I don’t think we can limit our top priorities to just three, but the following comes to mind when I step back and reflect on the past year.

1. Increasing our (Student Association) exposure to the campus community. Before we can create constructive, positive change on this campus, we as an organization must get our message out to the student body. Our message must be clear and consistent, and it must reflect the wishes of the student body. We as an organization must renew our commitment to serving the SVSU student body.

2. Registered Student Organization (RSO) Allocations is one of our main programs each year, and I understand the importance of these allocations. Student organizations rely on our allocations to fund conference visits, competitions and other programs that are sometimes pricey. If re-elected, I will make sure our allocations process is fair and easy to navigate for the RSO’s that apply for funding.

3. Defending student interests is also a critical responsibility of Student Association. The administration has done a good job of including student leaders in the decision-making process when it comes to new policies, but sometimes the students who are participating in the process fail to communicate with the student body. This can sometimes lead to policy decisions that do not take into account the majority opinion of students. It comes down to communication. If re-elected, I will be proposing a system that streamlines communication between Student Association and the student body.

Justin: Student Association’s top three priorities in my opinion are, providing leadership and representation for the student body, advocacy on behalf of the students of SVSU and increasing student involvement. If we truly represent the students, we need to be the ones that help students when there is a conflict with faculty and administration. If we are to act as elected representatives of the student body we need to hold ourselves to a higher standard. We need to be the change we want to see at Saginaw Valley. If we want students to be more involved, students need to see SA members more involved around campus. We need to see SA members at all kinds of events.


Question 2:

If you are elected, what changes do you hope to bring to Student Association?

Ted: There is a lot I hope to change this coming year, and many of these changes were proposed last year when I ran. We have had some success in bringing about change, but it’s a long term process. As everyone knows, institutional change is often slow, and impeded by those satisfied with the “status quo.” The following are a few specific changes I would like to bring to Student Association.

1) No more “drawn” posters. When we advertise for events, scholarship opportunities, etc, I would like to see us using the printing center, instead of hand drawing signs. I think this brings a more professional feel to our organization.

2) Better communication both internally and externally. I think we need to review our methods of communication both internally, and externally. Lack of communication is often a concern in all types of organizations, but our organization answers to nearly 11,000 college students, and possesses a budget exceeding $150,000.00, which means we have a strong responsibility of keeping the students in the loop.

3) This is not a specific change, but I would really like to re-evaluate virtually every aspect of Student Association, and I am hoping to leave the Association in a better position to represent the students and their interests.

Justin: I hope to bring increased transparency and accountability to the association, more visibly active leadership and action on behalf of the student body. I want students to be able to walk by our office and know what SA does for SVSU. I plan to hold regular press conferences. I will personally attend a wide range of events, and encourage SA members to do the same.


Question 3:

What experience would you bring to the position of president?

Ted: I now have a year of Student Association presidential experience under my belt. With a year under my belt, I now know what to expect, and I can plan the next year out even better than last summer. There is no “how-to video” when it comes to Student Government president, and so I can now rely on a year’s worth of experience, which is something I did not have a year ago.  As a sophomore, I was brought in as a student manager at the Marketplace (Formerly the RFoC). As a student manager, you have to earn the respect of over 60 fellow students. You can attend all the leadership seminars known to man, but nothing prepares you for leadership like firsthand experience.

As a freshman, I was elected to President of the College Republicans, and I helped coordinate interns on the Rick Snyder for Gubernatorial campaign. As a leader, it is important to listen first. Titles mean nothing if you don’t have the respect of your colleagues. You must earn that respect by relating with those around you, planning a course of action with everyone’s input, and then holding each other responsible for carrying out said plan of action.

Justin: I have been in SA for two years. I have served on every standing committee (Campus Events, Legislation and External Affairs, Allocations, Student Concerns and Public Information).

I have also served on a successful grade grievance, an academic misconduct hearing board, and the Faculty library committee. During high school I was also in several leadership roles such as President of the Conservation Club, Student Government Representative, Mock Trial Team Manager, among many other things.


Question 4:

What do you consider to be some of your greatest accomplishments
during your time at SVSU?

Ted: I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what my past accomplishments have been. I have been involved with numerous organizations on campus, and I have held numerous leadership positions. The thing is, time is constantly working against us, and one should not get caught up in the past. I guess my mindset is; what can I do today to improve the lives of the students? To be honest, maybe I am being too hard on myself, but to be honest, I spend much more time reflecting on past failures, than I do reflecting on past accomplishments. Hindsight is only 20/20 if you can look back and realize the mistakes you’ve made, and understand how you could have avoided said mistake. So, to answer the question, anytime I’ve been able to make a difference in even just one student’s life, I’ve succeeded.

Justin: Helping with two successful BoVs (Battle of The Valley), Anti Bullying week, Voter Registration, and many other events and efforts on behalf of the student body.

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