Lauren Murphy | Asst. Photo EditorStudent Association
Presidential candidates discuss how their platforms will achieve results
Rather than an actual dispute, the four Student Association presidential candidates engaged in friendly conversation on Sunday night at the SA presidential debate.
Candidate Allie Curtis said she was “really happy the debate remained cordial” throughout, despite the potential for a heated debate given the number of candidates.
CitrusTV’s Brian Cheung asked Curtis, Iggy Nava, Kyle Coleman and PJ Alampi, the four candidates, several questions. They were also asked questions by the audience and questions submitted via Twitter.
Despite the difference in platforms, all four candidates agreed with one another on the importance of producing results for the student body.
Nava referenced his platform, “The University We Want,” which highlights the importance of SA expanding and reaching all types of students on campus, including international students. He also said the involvement of more students on campus will create better success within SA.
Coleman said the three basic pillars of his campaign are based around the idea of producing results, instead of just talking about them. He said he wants to address the segregation issue on campus by selecting a representative from each organization on campus, in addition to faculty and administrators, and plan events on campus that involve the entire community.
The second pillar involves safety. Coleman wants the Department of Public Safety to clearly lay out a plan to improve student safety on campus to avoid more DPS email alerts.
For the final pillar, Coleman said he wants to clean up SA, so that it’s “more result-based.”
Alampi agreed with the other candidates on how there is a disconnect with the student organizations on campus and said this issue is the main focus of his campaign. As president, Alampi would help provide for all of the student organizations by helping them to improve public relations, budget properly and work together overall.
“It’s really about the larger picture which is Syracuse University; that’s why we’re here,” Alampi said. “We’re not about the residence halls or academic colleges. We’re Syracuse.”
Curtis said her campaign focuses on “real issues with real results.” The results she will produce if elected are further promoting civic and community engagement; changing the regulations regarding internships and bettering the way students obtain them; and promoting active advocacy with full representation in SA.
Through their platforms, the four candidates also hope to further connect with, inform and involve students in SA.
Alampi said he hopes to fix the current gap between students and SA by going out with the general assembly and talking to students. Instead of talking about the different issues in small committees, Alampi said, the issues would be talked about in a larger group.
Curtis said that as vice president she has increased student involvement in SA. If elected, she will work toward reaching 100 percent representation. Specifically, Curtis wants to better connect and re-engage the SU and State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry communities.
Nava said he wants to improve transparency, which is a major problem within SA. To fix this, Nava wants to establish campus organization liaisons to improve student feedback on various issues.
“The thing about the liaisons is that it won’t be a one-way street,” Nava said. “It’s not that they’re coming to us with problems, it’s also that we’re going to go to them.”
Coleman said the three other candidates were missing the “crux of the issue.” Students aren’t engaged in SA, he said, because they don’t see SA produce results. He said his results will make students more involved and aware of the issues.
“If they’re not getting anything out of us, of course they’re not going to be engaged,” he said.
In an interview after the debate, Nava said he was happy with his performance and said this debate showed which candidates had substance in their policies.
Curtis said after the debate she thought it highlighted her policies and that her active involvement in every committee in SA gives her an edge as a candidate.
When voting next week, Alampi said after the debate, he wants students to focus on the four candidates’ overall experiences, not just their specific plans.
Coleman, however, disagrees. After the debate he said he wants voters to focus on the specific plans and issues, instead of the campaign fluff that many of the candidates presented in the past couple of weeks.
Voting for SA candidates began Monday at midnight and continues until Thursday. Students must log on to their MySlice accounts to vote.
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