On April 7, SGA held a debate in Sykes among the candidates running for office for the 2011-2012 school year.The debate covered many topics for the candidates to discuss and allowed them to get their message to the students in attendance. Among the topics, diversity proved to be the biggest talking point with every candidate.
Presidential candidate Shaina Mason said she would like to unify organizations and help co-sponsor programs to save money. In addition, she said she would increase the amount of SGA programming, and reach out to students who usually do not get involved.
Jessica Alicea, presidential candidate, said that she would like to create a more transparent government for the students, get students more information on state issues and foster a strong senate and allow students to come to meetings to be involved.
On the issue of being visible, both candidates said they would not only make time to meet with students, but also just say hello to students as they passed on the way to class.
“I have great time management skills and will be able to take on the presidential position,” Mason said. “I can manage my time and listen to the students.”
Mason also said she would focus on all of the students and ask students what they would like to see changed within the school. Alicea said she would also like to keep the students informed of what is going on with Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE).
Vice Presidential candidate Michelle Strausbaugh said she would like to see an increase of student involvement on campus. As a result of a program called “What’s Happening,” student involvement has increased by 18 percent. She also said that she would try to help unify the senate.
Katie Kearney, candidate for the office of treasurer, said that she would put the students’ best interest first. One of the biggest concerns with the university is student involvement and Kearney said she would like to see that change and keep gaining student involvement.
One of the charges to the office of secretary is to boost school spirit. Candidate Francis McDyer said that he would bring school spirit to the forefront by promoting other organizations and not just sports. However, Mark Cerofeci, secretarial candidate, said he would take a school spirit initiative and continue to promote sporting events and other organizations. Both candidates did say they would try to improve school spirit. On the issue of student life, both candidates said they would encourage active participation for all students.
In closing, Mason said that she is running for the students and would like to see West Chester to go from adequate to spectacular. Alicea said that she wants to give back to West Chester and wants to be able to reach out to the students.
Mason was responsible for organizing Banana Day this year. She is also involved with the events staff and Sykes After Dark. Alicea is the executive director to RHA, an orientation leader and works with freshman interest groups.
Elections start Monday, April 11 at 10 a.m. in Sykes.
T.J. Cromyak is a fourth-year student majoring in communication studies with a minor in journalism. He can be reached at AC61771@wcupa.edu.