Live blog: SGA debate
Kennedy on how to mobilize students: What I envision for this campus is a lot of things: we’re trying as individuals to get this affordability, to get this accessibility, we need to take action before action’s been taken from us. Public education has been put on the back burner.
Jacobs on how to organize students against fee increases: I understand how to get students involved in the political process, having my background in politics, I’m really looking forward to bringing my experience to the table, worked on lobbying day last year, I know how to phone bank, how to lobby and network.
Louis on how to generate student involvement in lobbying against fee increases: We’ve been talking to students about the flagship fee and how that would affect them. I feel as if creating a lot of flare and face to face interactions with the students, letting them know what’s happening, would help them better understand what they’re paying for.
Louis: I haven’t known Yevin [Roh] really long, but last semester he performed at the Black Student Union’s poetry jam. Ever since I heard that piece, I knew we’d be the best of friends. We don’t butt heads, we both have the same goals, I don’t think there would be much of a conflict.
Kennedy on potential political disagreements with running mate Dave Robertson: Sometimes we may not have a common vision, but we do have a way to attain that goal together. Dave and I have known each other since freshman year, I am afraid to tell him when I disagree, and he’s afraid to tell me the same. We do have different views on a lot of things, but we do have the same goal: for the students’ voice to be heard.
Jacobs on potential disagreements with running mate Nathan Lamb: We don’t completely agree on politics, but we agree on how we can reach out and help students on campus. We like that we have a bipartisan ticket, so we can better represent all of the campus.
Kennedy on SGA experience: Just because I’ve been in the SGA doesn’t mean the SGA is my life. [I am] all about outreach, that’s what I envision the trustee position to be.
Jacobs on lack of SGA experience: I definitely know what’s going on, my interest is more in politics off-campus, and how that affects us here, so that’s where my involvement has been,
Louis on a lack of SGA experience: I believe the fact that I work with so many RSOs and agencies will enable me to do my job better, I’ve been interacting with a lot of the students on campus since my freshman year, and I know their needs, and I know that as of right now SGA isn’t fulfilling them
Kennedy: Our university is said to be affordable and accessible, but our record rings a different tune. Each year, we’re becoming more and more unaffordable. Affordable higher education for everyone would be an amazing idea, but right now we can’t do that. I want an educational system that provides increases in financial aid, I want a system where people at the end of the day, when they graduate here, they’re not up to their eyeballs in debt.
Jacobs: We shouldn’t accept fee increases at face value, but we need to be realistic, fee increases are probably coming and our budget is probably going to be cut, we should protect things students care about like financial aid and advising, working in real politics, I understand how to build that bridge (with the state) we need a student trustee with experience in real politics,
Jacobs: I’ve learned how policy is made, I”ve learned how the budget is done and I’ve learned how governments behave, I’ve also watched groups on campus try to get things done, a lot of whining about give us money, and it’s not working, the answer isn’t to yell louder, the answer is to start making substantive, realistic proposals about where the money should come from, to say where the money should come from and where it should go,
Louis: One of the things I’m for is fighting the fee hikes, and making school more affordable for the students, this is a public institution and increasing fees will not be beneficial. Want to make SGA more accessible for students.
Three Trustee Candidates: Candidate A Widlynn Louis, Candidate B is Emily Jacobs, Candidate C is Tina Kennedy
Lamb: If UMass Lowell can do it, we sure as hell can do it (on Free DD program) Want to work with Enterprise, give them business, they’ll give us a break.
Robertson: There’s 20,000 different stories out there and there’s 200 RSOs…there’s only one candidate out there with a plan to get more secretaries of diversity and RSOs.
Lamb: We need a much better effort to get people to run for office
Roh: It’s hard to know how you can be representative if everyone in the office appears, appears being the operative word, to come from homogeneous culture, i think the SGA needs to poster flags from every country represented in the SGA
Roh: Part of the way we can get the SGA to mirror the student body is increasing outreach to make the senate most representative of the student body, democracy will work naturally if we have more candidates
Lamb: I also think it’s important to maintain good relations with the town
Roh: I’m currently working on establishing a peer advising system, will work on reaching out to students more
Roh: Part of legitimacy is going out and meeting with the folks, the SGA is accountable to students and students are accountable to the SGA, in order to establish legitimacy with the student body, the SGA needs to go out, attend events, and talk to people on a one-on-one basis,
Robertson: I’m a recognized face in the student body that everyone knows will work to support students, everyone knows I will have the same work ethic as this administration, they know who I am, maybe it’s the height.
Robertson: This isn’t the real government, what we’re discussing is not cutting taxes or keeping taxes where they are, UMA has one of the lowest student activities trsut funds at 94, it’s absolutely dismal, a 2-3$ raise would ensure that we don’t need to cut agencies, which is one of the biggest positive images UMass has out there,
Yevin: Completely support the free DD program, if any of you have 21st birthday’s coming up, hit me up on people finder
1st question goes to Lamb: YOu’ve said the SGA is about students helping students and everyday you’ll work on focusing on the problems which can make student life at UMass frustrating and difficult, how will you work on those problems/
Lamb: I feel like right now a lot of students don’t know how to contact the SGA when they have problems; I’m going to run my cabinet a little differently than most presidents run their cabinets. i want to surround myself with the best people from the university that know what the issues are, want a secretary of greek life, sec of sustainability that will come from those areas and tell me what i can do to help, want to work on revamping the SGA website, means small investment to get a better website running, allow it to be a place for RSOs, student groups to network and come together, encourage student involvement in that manner, plan on holding regularly scheduled town hall meetings, basically what it will be is most likely a bi-week;y town hall meeting where anybody can walk into , say cape cod lounge, air concerns, want a really good web presence through social media outlets, any time a student has a problem they can find the SGA on Facebook or on the new website, it’s just the whole SGA bubble I was talking about earlier, we need to refocus our efforts on reaching out to students instead of waiting for them to find the Student Govt Association Office
Robertson: Other than being second tallest thing on campus other than library, I’m a poli sic and economics major, so i have twice the work and half the fun,
Lamb: I’m currently a junior political science major, spent my first two years in chem engineering, lived in O-Hill, Sylvan, then off campus, didn’t get involved in the SGA until I switched to political science and realized that politics is really what I love.
Creamer: At the end of this, we’ll do the trustees, same procedure. We’ll begin with candidate a, you can make your introduction