The Shippensburg University Student Government Association (SGA) announced the results of its spring Executive Leadership Committee (ELC) election Thursday evening.
Candidates began the campaign season in mid-February on virtual platforms. Students campaigned on social media and SGA held candidate speeches over Zoom.
In the presidential race, current vice president of student groups, sophomore Riley Brown garnered more votes than junior Residence Hall Association (RHA) senator Jordan Newsome-Little.
Newsome-Little said she ran for office for “Shippensburg to set sail for a little something new.”
“I’ve decided to run for president of the Student Government Association because Shippensburg University needs healing, transparency and accountably.” Newsome-Little said. “I would like Shippensburg to set sail for a little something new; making plans and establishing a more inclusive university.”
Brown emphasized a vision of a “collective campus family” in his purpose statement early in the campaign.
“Being a Raider means being inclusive. Being a Raider means having understanding. And being a Raider means having pride in our university,” Brown said. Brown added, “My pledge to you is to work tirelessly to confront the challenges that face us, bridge the different parts of our campus together and put students first.”
Despite the threat of potential write-in options, candidates vying for the other four positions each took their desired spot.
Imani Cameron, a junior non-traditional student senator, will be the vice president of internal affairs. Cameron said she wanted the position to help the organization “maximize success” through a “fortified internal foundation.”
“Through implementing these changes, we would not only have a unified student government but a united campus as well,” Cameron said.
Sophomore Christopher Higgins is the next vice president of student groups. Higgins emphasized the role student groups play in bringing the campus community together.
“I believe that student groups are the most efficient way to connect with the campus family,” Higgins said.
Sophomore and current class of 2023 senator Chase Slenker won the vice president of finance position. Slenker said he wanted to financially bridge the gaps and work to uphold transparency and accountability during his term.
“We are indeed a diverse campus family; however, areas of our community feel underfunded and unsupported. I am running to bridge the gaps between areas of campus though student group financial allocations,” Slenker said.
Skylar Walder, a first-year student and current female athletics senator, is the next vice president of external affairs. Walder wants to use her position to connect the campus together as “one family.”
“A campus filled with students that come from all different backgrounds have a variety of skills and bring their interests to the table. College is a life-changing event, and I want to help students find their true passion in campus life,” Walder said.
Brown, Higgins, Slenker and Walder all ran under the “One Campus One Family” campaign. The voting period ran from March 1-4.
SGA Elections Chair Siara Gutierrez said students cast 568 votes in the virtual election.
“I believe the elections committee and all the candidates did a great job with engaging students. Due to COVID-19, we decided to run elections 100% virtually. It is difficult to get a 100% voter turnout, but I am proud to see the hard work everyone put into the election,” Gutierrez said.
Students used an online system on Campus Groups to cast their votes. Guiterrez also said the elections committee is now accepting applications for SGA senator positions.
“We need the next group of student leaders to step up and get involved with SGA,” Guiterrez said. SGA makes important decisions that affect all students especially regarding the student budget and communicating student concerns with the school's administration.”
These are the available positions:
Student Life Senators
a. Athletics (2)
b. Commuter (1)
d. International (1)
f. Nontraditional (1)
h. Transfer (1)
a. College of Arts and Sciences (1)
b. College of Business (1)
c. College of Education and Human Services (1)
d. Exploratory Studies (1)
e. Honors College (1)
a. First-Year Students (2)
b. Sophomore Class (2)
c. Junior Class (2)
d. Senior Class (2)