By Anthony Navarrete, Staff Writer
Students will have an opportunity to vote for the next president of the Student Government Association when the online polls open on Monday. Running for president are Thao Nguyen and Jordan Ojile. The winners will be announced at Jet Friday the day after the polls close.
Ojile has served one term on SGA and said his time there has shown him how to compromise and get bills passed. Ojile said he has served in other executive positions, but said he believes SGA offers him, “a unique way to make a bigger impact.”
Ojile said his team is running on the theme, “Your Voice, Your Change.” He said he wants his team to be visible on campus and for students to feel comfortable approaching them and having conversations to understand what needs they want met.
After a recent town hall meeting, Ojile said he’s heard students complain about how their money is spent and wants them to know his team will make decisions that students feel comfortable with and, if elected, said his team would be fiscally responsible.
“We want people to feel they have a voice and an ear to the administration,” he said.
Emphasizing Newman traditions is another aspect of student life that Ojile said he wants work on after hearing students complaints.
Ojile said he met with clubs such the Multicultural Leadership Organization, Black Student Union and the theatre department and talked about how SGA could help them grow and enact changes they hope to see next year.
“My executive board doesn’t know many people in the theatre department. I thought it was important to get a feel for what page they’re on,” he said.
Ojile said his team has been utilizing Snapchat as a way to engage with students. He said that if he is elected, his team will continue to use Snapchat to remain transparent to the students.
He also has given out cake balls and donuts on the campaign trail.
Ojile said some of the feedback he’s received has included a desire to add a disk golf course to campus, which he says his team is looking into.
Nguyen served on SGA his freshman year as a senator, executive secretary his sophomore year and this past year served as vice president.
“It’s taught me how to be creative and how to gather student feedback and the best ways to channel that and best avenues to address student concerns and make actual changes on campus,” he said.
Nguyen said his team is running on three themes: inclusion, improvement and keeping in touch.
Nguyen said he wants the different groups to feel their thoughts and concerns are being included. Using the feedback they receive, Nguyen said his board would plan to continue to improve campus life and the Newman experience.
Nguyen said his team wants to help students stay in touch with their physical and mental health. He said his team wants to make yoga and meditation regular events on campus. He said his team will also work to enhance spaces on campus to help students feel relaxed.
Nguyen’s team has campaigned by giving out cookies and Oreo balls, and by producing a video that is a parody of the sitcom “The Office.”
“We want to celebrate places that are on campus that people will recognize and adapt that to another video that people relate with,” he said.
Ojile has Jonathan Liu as vice president, Gabrielle Altenor as secretary and Caleb Limes as treasurer on his ticket.
On Nguyen’s ticket is Emily Larkin as vice president, Preston Bui as secretary and Courtney Klaus as treasurer.
PHOTO: JORDAN OJILE (LEFT) AND THAO NGUYEN (RIGHT) are running for SGA president. Courtesy Photo, Dana Beitey