BSG announces election results

Noemi Pedraza-Aguado, Contributing Writer

On Aug. 28, the University announced the results of the Bucknell Student Government (BSG) election for the 2020-2021 school year. Kip Hallagan ’21, Caroline Tattersfield ’22, Isaiah Mays ’23 and Bernie Maramis ’23 were all elected presidents of their class.

The student body voted for candidates whom they believed were qualified to support the needs of all students. Each elected official plays an important role in the University, representing their respective class in the executive committee, House committees or Congress. These elected officials also meet once a week all together at Congress to discuss as a group what is necessary to improve the lives of the student population. Some of the winners are returning to their position, while others have been elected for the first time.

“I voted based on whether they had information attached to their names in the ballot to see if they could persuade me into voting for them. If none of the candidates had it, I voted based on people whose names I recognized,” Carlos Gonzalez ’24 said.

BSG aims to provide representation and a voice for all students in the University. One of the areas that many BSG members hope to amend is the meal plan. The University’s newly announced meal plan for the semester has resulted in concern among students about its quality and affordability.

“BSG is the voice of the students and we will make sure that their voices will be heard. Students deserve edible food and a reasonably priced meal plan. When talking about COVID-19, we encourage students to take precautions in order for all of us to have a safe and healthy academic year,” Isaiah Mays, president of the class of ’23, said.

For some students, studying remotely from campus results in a social barrier from being able to be more involved on campus. “With the current climate, I hope student government can create activities or create any other type of involvement that will allow on-campus and remote students to interact with each other and get to know each other well, as it’s easy for remote students to sometimes feel disconnected or not included,” Krystell Ewing ’24 said.

Aside from these elected official roles, House committees such as the Academic, Advocacy, Community, Diversity, Sustainability or Organizational Review Board (ORB) committees also work toward improving the University. With the recent visibility of the Black Lives Matter movement, many universities have taken measures to become a more welcoming environment for Black and BIPOC communities, something that the Diversity Committee has made an effort to improve.

“In general, through the committee, we have and will continue to hold Bucknell accountable to what they state to be their diversity and inclusion objectives and for them to go beyond just utilizing diversity as a method of advertising,” Jasmine Minhas ’22, the chair of the Diversity Committee, said.

Throughout the summer, Minhas and the Diversity Committee worked with Public Safety in hopes of demilitarizing and defunding portions of the department. Although the University preferred to implement more diversity training, Minhas believes that the Diversity Committee will continue to do its best to advocate for the University’s Black community. 

“Our goal with this committee is to start building those relationships and trust with the many diverse communities at Bucknell through action to show that their collective wellbeing is a priority,” Minhas said.

President of the Class of ’24, Bernie Maramis reiterated these goals. “I plan to bridge the gap between students of color and white students by hosting inclusive activities — whether it be virtual or in-person (with social distancing in mind). I intend on using my platform to be a voice for the students of color, who are often silenced or not taken seriously on campus,” said Maramis

Although this semester looks very different in comparison to previous years, many of the elected officials in BSG are committed to supporting all students. “Even with the difficulties of the pandemic, our BSG class senate is dedicated to making it a fun year for everyone,” Andrew Finegan, vice president of the class of ’23, said.

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