Today: Jun 17, 2024

SGA sees increase in voter turnout, DeNucci reacts to winning election

Jay’Mi Vazquez – News Editor

The Student Government Association elections for the Fall 2023 semester are finished. The winners of the election were Leanne Pedroso, Katie Falasco, Hailey DeNucci, Evan Curtis, and Christian Schloemer. 

Nursing major Hailey DeNucci, a freshman, was one of the five student candidates who won the election to become a representative. She will also be the class president of the 2027 class. 

“I am excited and relieved to be a member of the Student Government Association. The process was lengthy, but I appreciated the informational meeting, the campaigning period and the voting period.” DeNucci said.  

DeNucci said that she has had some previous experience related to SGA in high school, being a senator for her high school class for three years. She said this experience is why she feels confident in her new role.  

“I understood the differences between class government and student government but wanted to be a part of both. I enjoyed creating fundraisers and putting on events for my high school class, but student government addresses educational policies and academics, which is enticing,” DeNucci said. 

DeNucci said she has a few big plans she wants to begin with her new roles in SGA. To begin with, she wants to implement some changes to campus dining, certain major pre-requisites and bookstore prices.  

She thanks everyone who voted for her and is eager to meet more of the campus community to get them what they need.  

President of SGA Kyle Mashia-Thaxton said that he is thrilled to have new people joining. 

“It is always an exciting, fresh breath of air to see new, eager students get involved in SGA,” Thaxton said. 

Thaxton has been a part of SGA for the last year and a half. He said that it was a goal of his to ensure elections were active and stable after dealing with the negative impacts COVID-19 had on enrollment and retention. 

“Although voting turnout remains low, it is higher than it was during our most recent election two and a half years ago during the pandemic. There were just over 215 undergraduate student votes casted for the candidates in this election,” Thaxton said. “SGA will have to reflect on this most recent election in order to improve our future elections, as our voting goal for the next election should be to get between 300 and 400 undergraduate votes.” 

Nonetheless, Thaxton said he is proud of the election campaign and all those who participated. He said seeing and being able to have one take place at the university again blossomed an exciting, yet memorable moment for him. 

Thaxton explained some of the responsibilities these new members will have to partake in. 

“When new members join SGA, the executive board and I do our best to help these students adjust to SGA since they are joining mid-semester,” Thaxton said. 

SGA will be hosting a community day event for all the newly elected representatives to participate in team bonding activities that strengthen a sense of community. 

Thaxton said once newly elected representatives are ready, they will be able to decide between one of the four boards that they offer for representatives to join.  

“We have four boards—Board of Academic Experience, Board of Student Experience, Student Activity Fee Allocation Committee and Board of Outreach,” Thaxton said. “Once assigned to a board, our new SGA representatives will start attending those boards immediately so they can be brought up to speed as to what that board is focusing on.” 

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