Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.
The Daily Gazette has reprinted these platforms in full without changes (excepting a change in font):
Chair of Student Life Platforms:
I’m Rasheed Bryan; currently, I am the Co-President of SOCA (Students of Caribbean Ancestry), a member of the College Budget Committee, and I am also a part of 180 Consulting. Now, I am asking for your vote to be your Chair of Student Life.
Here are some of my top priorities for next semester:
Build a Better Dining Experience
– Create Healthier options
– Decrease frequency of Pasta Bar (from 2x’s to once a week)
– Extend Essie’s meal swipe hours
Increase Campus Sustainability
– Reduce the amount of un-recyclable number 3 and 6 plastics used on campus
– Increase the number of recycling bins around campus
More Opportunities to get out of the Swarthmore Bubble
– Designate a bi-monthly shuttle into Philadelphia
– Offer more subsidize Septa tickets
Increase Campus Dialogue
– SGO becomes more engaged in social and civic campus issues by holding moderated conversations, which could range in style from coffee talks to the debates done by Intelligence Squared.
Reform the School Alcohol Policy
– Reform the school’s outdated ban on serving hard alcohol at parties
– Create workshops, facilitated by Joshua Ellow, about how to effectively host pregames to create better drinking experiences
Amplify the voices of marginalized communities
– Serve as liaison between marginalized groups and SGO, to make sure the needs of these groups are met.
Suggestions? Questions? Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org!
Hi, I’m Won Chung.
From 2016 to 2017, I served as the SGO Chair of Internal Affairs, hosting 12 study breaks with various clubs and organizations.
From 2015 to 2016, I served on two SGO committees: Student Life Committee and Student Organization Committee, hosting study breaks and chartering new clubs and organizations.
Now, I want to serve as your Chair of Student Life.
➔ Focus On Bringing Back Study Breaks and Events
I want to focus on bringing back chipotle, ramen, donut, and sushi study breaks in addition to bringing back therapy dogs and petting zoos. I know that these study breaks and events are therapeutic and essential to the campus community.
I’ve planned a lot of study breaks before, let me just continue doing them.
At-Large Senator Platforms:
Dear Members of the Swarthmore College Community,
It would be a great honor to serve as one of your At-Large Senators. I firmly believe that we have the potential as a student body to do incredible things, but also that we still have a long way to go in increasing access to opportunities for every member of our community.
When I applied to Swarthmore, I was enthralled by the opportunity to, as one admissions counselor put it, do “well” and (more importantly) do “good.” Now, having studied and engaged with the community for four semesters on campus and one abroad in a variety of academic departments and student organizations, I recognize how essential it is that we work together, and not only individually, to accomplish those two goals of doing well and doing good.
As a Medical Anthropology special major, I also understand that our campus is not a refuge from the very troubling realities of classism, xenophobia, sexism, or racism that we experience and read about more and more every day. Further, I recognize that, on our campus, every one of us experiences these realities differently. Pierre Bourdieu might understand these different experiences in terms of his “field” theory: each of us, with different accumulations of recognized and unrecognized social, economic, cultural, and symbolic “capital,” is faced with the task of navigating the same field of Swarthmore College to do as well and as much good as possible in these four short years.
Everyone in our community should have the same access to this opportunity, and we cannot stand for any action which diminishes that accessibility for any individual or group.
This theme is especially important today, as we continue moving forward into uncertain politics as a nation and world. While Swarthmore may not be a refuge from unsettling realities, we can continue the work of so many community members and ensure that it is a space safe for every person to grow academically and politically.
As one of your At-Large Senators, I will work as hard as I can to ensure that the Standing Committees of the Student Government Organization work together to address your needs on this campus. Therefore, during my term, I promise to engage in the areas which you identify as important and necessary in order to make the campus more accessible. To accomplish this, I will advocate for quality and regular opportunities for you to engage in dialogue with your representatives in SGO, as well as for a better-organized network of student and other groups. Furthermore, I promise to personally make myself available to anyone or any group who has a concern or suggestion to improve the Swarthmore College experience, as well as to follow through with any comments to the furthest extent possible.
Thank you for considering my platform in making your decision. I appreciate your time, and look forward to returning to campus in January and working to increase the accessibility of academic and other opportunities for every person in our community, regardless of the result of this election.
If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please feel free to contact me. My email address is email@example.com.
Sincerely and respectfully,
Jacob Demree ‘19
Joshua Siegel ’20’s platform is not pasted here because it is shared with the campus on a protected Google Doc that disables copying. You can view it here.
Hello Swarthmore!! My name is Dylan Clairmont and I’m running to be an At-Large Senator. Just a little bit about myself for those of you who I haven’t gotten the pleasure of meeting yet, I’m a prospective Poli Sci/Linguistics/Peace and Conflict Studies major. Outside of academics, I’m a member of the Campus Journal section of the Phoenix, a board-member of SQU, a member of the Swat Dems, and host a radio show at WSRN. As At-Large Senator, I wish to represent Swarthmore in all its glory, quirkiness, messiness, loveliness, strangeness and all its diverse forms of beauty. I believe that I should be an At-Large Senator because I’m experienced, willing to represent and fight for every Swarthmore student, and have it in me to inspire actual change on the Swarthmore campus.
As a member of student government all throughout high school, I am very much familiar with the inner workings of student governments. It’s an at times frustrating, but extremely rewarding job. I’m excited to be able to have more input at Swarthmore than at my public high school, as Swat seems much more willing to hear students’ voices and actually inspire real changes due to what the students have to say. I acknowledge the fact that as a white male, I won’t be able to accurately depict a lot of the struggles that Swat students are going through, so as I result I plan on maintaining close ties with organizations such as ENLACE, Colors, etc. so that I can hear directly from marginalized groups on campus and use their words to best represent them, rather than muted words of my own.
Especially in our current political cycle, holding Swarthmore accountable is going to be a big job. Trump is currently trying to undo much of Obama’s work over the past eight years, so it’s our job to make sure that Swarthmore maintains the same values regardless of who is in power nationally. We as students have much more power than we think, and we can already see this power shown in how students fought for President Valerie Smith to maintain Title IX procedures and she issued a statement claiming that she will. As one of your At-Large Senators, I hope to continue this dialogue between administration and students and not only keep the current processes we have in place, but make sure that Swarthmore doesn’t stagnate and rather continues to grow and evolve to represent every student equally and impactfully.
Inclusivity, representation, giving a voice to the voiceless, etc. are all great buzzwords, but what does that actually look like? As At-Large Senator, I don’t only wanna talk the talk, but also walk the walk. A huge part of my platform involves ensuring that Swarthmore continues to become more transparent in where funding is going and what policies are currently in place. Not only that, Swarthmore also has a rich history of quirks and idiosyncrasies that make Swat Swat, but we need to do a better job of preserving them so that Swat remains the interesting and enriching institution it has always been. Swarthmore is also at an exciting crossroads as it works to be a key player in the carbon pricing as well as compost efforts, but devestment is still a process that we need to force on administration. I hope that you will elect me to represent you, Swarthmore’s student body, in this upcoming election, but regardless of where your vote goes out I’m wishing everyone a great year and can’t wait to work with Swarthmore to take this school to even greater heights.
My name is Jonathan Galvan and I am a first year student. I am running in the special election for the vacant At-Large Senate Seat. If I am chosen by the campus to represent it, I would like to address two major issues in my time as a senator.
SGO has had a reputation of dysfunction and ineffectiveness, so much so that people would rather use alternative avenues to confront administration on issues they care about. I believe the best way to fix this reputation issue, and in result make SGO a more effective channel for students is to become more transparent. Specifically, we could achieve this by:
- Opening board meetings to the public
- Publicizing meetings
- Moving meetings to a larger space so that they are truly seen as open to everyone.
- Ensuring that future special elections are done to align with what the people want, rather than any person or group of people’s agenda
- Outreach to Student Groups
Student Groups on campus have made amazing strides to represent the issues of the student body. In many instances, they have accomplished this better than SGO has. This has happened because student groups have given us more reason to believe they represent the students and not administration. If we can institute initiatives aimed at bridging the gap between SGO and the students they’re supposed to represent, SGO will become a tool for change that students can actually trust in.