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Wednesday, March 9, 2016 7:42 p.m.

Hart explains withdrawal from SA race

Former Student Association presidential candidate Tony Hart released a statement Wednesday explaining his abrupt withdrawal from this week’s election.

In a public Facebook note, Hart listed his personal mental health and attacks from other students as reasons why he decided to drop out of the race. The announcement of his withdrawal came during the Joint Elections Committee debate Monday night.

Hart said in the post that he never intended to run for political office, but that he thought his position as a nonwhite, non-Greek, non-affluent student would put him in place to make significant change as SA president.

“I thought I could put a spotlight on the issues facing our community,” Hart wrote. “I thought I could rally our student body to demand more from our university and more from ourselves. I thought I could profoundly change the way the Student Association is viewed by thousands upon thousands of students on this campus.”

Hart wrote that he was personally attacked by students who told him not to run because it could ruin plans for other candidates. He said after his official announcement, more hurtful comments began to emerge, including one student who said Hart was “too poor to run for SA president.”

These factors, Hart said, contributed to a week of minimal sleep and changes in health and study habits and culminated with his decision to not participate in Monday night’s debate and drop out of the race.

“Last night I put my suit on, walked to the steps of the Marvin Center, and simply did not have the strength to walk up the steps and enter the debate room,” Hart wrote. “I turned towards two of my closest friends and asked them to walk me home as tears began to run down my face. At that moment, I knew nothing in life was worth the way I was feeling.”

Erika Feinman and Christina Giordano are now competing for the top spot. Voting is open until 9 p.m. Thursday.

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Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016 3:28 p.m.

SA to hold elections second week of March

Student Association elections will be held on March 9 and 10, the Joint Elections Committee announced Tuesday.

Students will elect a new president and executive vice president of the Student Association, and will also vote to fill 15 undergraduate, 13 graduate and two law school seats on the senate, according to the JEC’s website.

Candidates must submit a candidacy statement to the JEC during the third week of February and postering will take place on Feb. 26.

Three members of the JEC are appointed by the SA President and approved by the SA Senate, according to the JEC charter. One member is appointed by the Class Council and another by Program Board.

A record total of 5,456 students voted in last year’s election. Students overwhelmingly supported referenda to establish mandatory sexual assault training at Colonial Inauguration and to remove fossil fuel investments from GW’s endowment.

Former Executive Vice President Casey Syron stepped down from his position Friday afternoon, citing personal and health reasons.

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Friday, March 27, 2015 12:55 a.m.

Photos: 2015 Student Association Elections

Updated: March 27, 2015 at 11:39 a.m.

Junior Andie Dowd hugs presidential candidate Ben Pryde after the presidential results were announced. Dowd won this year’s election with with 2,659 votes in a three-candidate field. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

Junior Andie Dowd hugs presidential candidate Ben Pryde after the results were announced. Dowd won this year’s election with 2,659 votes in a three-candidate field.
Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

 

Alexandra Puig, vice chair of the Joint Elections Committee, reads election results to students in J street Thursday night. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

Lisa Rocco, a Center for Student Engagement staff member and the Joint Elections Committee’s adviser, reads election results to students in J Street on Thursday night. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

 

Charles Spirtos was one of three ESIA-U senators elected Thursday night. Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Photographer

Charles Spirtos was one of three ESIA-U senators elected Thursday night. Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Photographer

 

Students crowded in J Street to hear the results of the SA election. 5,456 students voted in this year’s election, a record number compared to previous years, which have been marked with sub-par turnout for a student body of more than 25,000. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

Students crowded in J Street to hear the results of the SA election. A total of 5,456 students voted in this year’s election, a record number compared to previous years, which have been marked by sub-par turnout for a student body of more than 25,000. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

 

Sophomore Thomas Falcigno was one of six CCAS-U senators elected. He will serve his second term as an SA senator starting in May. Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Photographer

Sophomore Thomas Falcigno was one of six CCAS-U senators elected. He will serve his second term as an SA senator starting in May. Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Photographer

 

During his tenure as SA president, this year Nick Gumas successfully completed two major initiatives - creating a peer support program and reducing the costs of internships. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

During his tenure as SA president this year, Nick Gumas successfully completed two major initiatives – creating a peer-support program and reducing the costs of internships. Desiree Halpern | Contributing Photo Editor

 

This post was updated to reflect the following correction:
In a photo caption, The Hatchet incorrectly identified CSE staff member Lisa Rocco as Alexandra Puig, vice chair of the Joint Elections Committee. We regret this error.

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Updated: March 25, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.

Student groups began announcing their support for Student Association candidates this week.

That starts the competition to see which candidates will rack up the most endorsements. More than 40 organizations endorsed candidates last year.

Let the race begin. Elections will be held March 25 and 26.

President

Ben Pryde
Green GW
GW Alexander Hamilton Society
GW Club Polo
GW College Democrats
GW College Republicans
GW Desis
GW Philosophy Club
GW Polo Club
GW-TV
GWU School of Business MBA Association
Multicultural Greek Council
Sikh Student Association
Student Theatre Council
Turkish Student Association

Andie Dowd
Allied in Pride
Alpha Kappa Epsilon
Alpha Delta Pi
Alpha Phi Omega
Alternative Greek Council
Beta Alpha Psi
Buzzing 4 Change
Camp Kesem
Capitol Advertising
Delta Phi Epsilon
Delta Sigma Pi
Epsilon Sigma Alpha Sorority
Feminist Student Union
The FREE Project
Finance and Investments Club
GW Against Alzheimer’s
GW Alternative Breaks
GW Club Sports Council
GW DECA
GW Equestrian Team
GW Interfraternity Council
GW Pakistani Students’ Association
GW Panhellenic Association
GW Pitches
GW Sparks
GW Students Helping Honduras
GW Troubadours
GW Women in Business
Human Services Student Organization
International Affairs Society
Muslim Students Association
National Council of Negro Women
Net Impact
Pre-Law Student Association
Real Estate Investment and Development Organization
Rhythms of Love
South Asian Society
Student-Athlete Advisory Council
Students Alliance for Israel
Students Helping Honduras
Success Talks
Undergraduate Business Association
Undergraduate Consulting Club
Voices for Choices
What I Be Project at GW

Alex Cho
CapCityCollege
Chinese Student Scholars Association
Corean Business Undergraduate Organization (CUBO)
GWU Hong Kong International Association
Hope Christian Fellowship
George Washington University International Debate Society
Graduate Korean Student Association
GW Reporters Without Borders
Korean International Studies Organization
Korean Student Association
Vietnamese Student Association
Korean American Law Student Association

Executive Vice President

Spencer Perry
Allied in Pride
Capitol Food Recovery
Epsilon Sigma Alpha Sorority
GW Alternative Breaks Program
GW Club Sports Council
GW College Democrats
GW Feminist Student Union
GW Polo Club
GW Pre-Law Student Association
GW Voices for Choices

Carlo Wood
Black Student Union
Black Men’s Initiative
NAMI – On Campus
GW Sparks
Multicultural Greek Council

Casey Syron

Alpha Phi Omega
Arab Student Association
Camp Kesem
Delta Phi Epsilon
GW Against Alzheimer’s
GW Club Water Polo
GW College Republicans
GW International Affairs Society
GW Panhellenic Association
GW Philosophy Club
GW Pitches
GW Public Health Student Association
GW Troubadours
GW Undergraduate Business Association
Interfraternity Council
Men’s Ultimate Frisbee Team
National Council of Negro Women
School of Medicine and Health Sciences Student Council
Student Alliance for Israel
Students for Justice in Palestine
Student Theatre Council

We’ll continue to update this blog as more endorsements are announced. Has your organization endorsed a candidate we don’t know about? Email news@gwhatchet.com to be included in this tally. 

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Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2015 9:37 p.m.

SA elections to be held in March

Voting for student body positions will take place on March 25 and 26, the Joint Elections Committee announced Wednesday.

The elections, which are for positions on the Student Association, Program Board and Class Council, will be a month later than last year’s.

“All of us on the JEC are very excited to begin the 2015 student body election process,” JEC chair Zachary Speck said in a release. “We look forward to working with all the prospective candidates in the coming months to elect the new group of top student advocates.”

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Judy Lim | Hatchet Staff Photographer

Judy Lim | Hatchet Staff Photographer

The Student Association is one step closer to elections after confirming three representatives to serve on the Joint Elections Committee.

The nominees, selected by SA President Nick Gumas, will work on the committee to oversee this year’s elections for the SA, Program Board and Class Council.

In an SA Senate meeting Monday night, all three candidates discussed plans to encourage participation in elections by reaching out to more of the student body, particularly graduate students.

Representative Alexandra Puig, who served on the JEC her freshman and sophomore years, suggested using social media to expand outreach. She added that the JEC could make efforts to contact students studying abroad.

“I didn’t work on the JEC my spring semester of junior year because I was abroad, and I definitely got to see it from a different standpoint of being away,” she said.

Zachary Speck, a representative who is returning after serving on the JEC last year, said the committee could work closely with different GW officials to make sure that elections run smoothly.

Because of delayed discussions with the housing office last year, candidates were only allowed to campaign by themselves in residence halls, even though they had normally been allowed to campaign with others. Speck said the JEC should reach out to housing officials earlier to prevent the same issue this year.

He also addressed difficulties that law school and medical school students faced while trying to access their online ballots last year.

Speck said “it wasn’t something the JEC themselves was responsible for,” but it could be resolved by “making sure from the IT standpoint everyone is on the same page.”

New representative Lisa Francis, who had never been involved with the SA before, said that being a part of student government was on her “GW Bucket List.”

“I think I represent a fresh face for the JEC and the SA as a whole,” she said.

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Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014 3:56 p.m.

Student Association elections through the ages

This post was written by Hatchet reporter Ari Boyarsky

As the 2014 Student Association election cycle draws to a close, here’s a look at past campaign seasons, platforms and controversies.

1992
The Hatchet asked candidates if they would support the creation of an African studies program at GW, and what could be done to improve relations between black and white students. Here are a few responses:

Junior Kenneth Falls: “I would not support an African studies program because it would cause more dissension than it would unity.”

Junior Chris Ferguson: “You need to look at the University’s resources… you want to make sure it is a quality program. If the administration is just going to create a Band-Aid solution by creating a program without the funds, it’s not worth it.”

Junior Michael Musante: “If it was to come down to a student referendum, I’d like to see a student referendum on it. If there’s that many people interested in it, they’d get out and vote for it.”

2000
The Joint Elections Committee had to approve every page of a campaign website before candidates could launch them. Even though the Internet became a popular campaign tool, palm cards and posters remained dominant.

Kris Hart works in his office last year. Hatchet File Photo

Kris Hart works in his office last year. Hatchet File Photo

2003
FoBoGro owner Kris Hart ran for SA president in 2003, pledging to improve 4-RIDE and University Counseling Center services – platform goals in line with both of this year’s SA presidential candidates. Hart ended up winning by 91 votes.

2006
After serving a year as the second-in-command of the SA, Morgan Corr tried to become the SA’s first openly gay president in 2006. But his campaign came under investigation for paying a student group during the election, and one top student leader recommended that Corr be impeached and removed from office.

2009
The Joint Elections Committee took Kyle Boyer’s name off the ballot after the presidential candidate failed to report the fair market value of a friend’s car he used to display posters on H Street. He also came under fire for failing to report how much he spent on purchasing Facebook advertisements.

2010
A write-in candidate named Steve Holt was elected to Senior Class Council and the Marvin Center Governing Board, but he never showed up on election night. Three juniors ran the campaign for the fake candidate, named after the Arrested Development character, to lighten up the campaign season. More than 350 people joined Holt’s group on Facebook and dozens followed his Twitter account.

His platform also claimed he would “help the University crack down on the use of drugs, especially forget-me-nows and oxy-incontinent. As for alcohol, I am 26 and do not entirely care about the policy.”

– Brianna Gurciullo contributed reporting

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Just two candidates will battle for Student Association president this spring after a third competitor failed to qualify for the campaign, kicking off what will likely be the closest race in years.

Sophomore Ryan Kaminsky was disqualified after failing to gather enough signatures on his petition, said Chelsea Lenhart, chair of the Joint Elections Committee. He filed registration forms for the top post last week, but did not gather the 250 signatures needed to confirm his candidacy, she said.

Daniel Egel Weiss, the highest ranking member of the Student Association Senate, wants to reform the 4-Ride system and improve academic advising. Samuel Hardgrove | Hatchet Staff Photographer

Daniel Egel Weiss, the highest ranking member of the Student Association Senate, wants to reform the 4-Ride system and improve academic advising. Samuel Hardgrove | Hatchet Staff Photographer

That leaves just two candidates to become next year’s top student leader next year, likely making it the closest presidential race in years.

Sen. Nick Gumas, CCAS-U and chair of the senate’s student life committee, and Senate President Pro Tempore Daniel Egel-Weiss both announced their candidacy last week.

Student Association Sen. Nick Gumas, U-At Large, is also the president of Allied in Pride. Sam Hardgrove | Hatchet Staff Photographer

Student Association Sen. Nick Gumas, U-At Large, is also the president of Allied in Pride. Sam Hardgrove | Hatchet Staff Photographer

Gumas pledged to tackle student health issues, such as creating a peer counseling program, while Egel-Weiss has taken on the issue of campus safety, with plans to reform the 4-Ride shuttle service.

It’s also the smallest race in recent memory, down from four presidential candidates last year and five the previous year.

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The Student Association race took place on March 20 last year, about a month later than this year's elections. Hatchet File Photo.

The Student Association race took place on March 20 last year, about a month later than this year’s elections. Hatchet File Photo.

Elections for the next campus leaders will take place Feb. 19 and Feb. 20, the Joint Elections Committee announced.

That’s about a month earlier than last year, when elections were held March 20.

Students will officially declare their candidacy between Feb. 3 and 6.

Election season will be in full-swing in about two weeks: the annual postering day – in which dozens of early-risers cover nearly every inch of campus with flyers – will be Feb. 13.

The candidates will join for a campus-wide debate on Feb. 18 at 7:30 p.m.

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Updated: Wednesdayy, March 20, 2013, 1:17 a.m.

Student organizations began handing out their stamps of approval for Student Association candidates this week.

Last year, about 50 student groups supported the eight candidates for president and executive vice president. Elections will be held after spring break on March 20 and 21. To hear from the candidates, stop by this year’s Student Association debate, co-hosted by The Hatchet, on March 19 at 7 p.m.

Did we miss an endorsement? E-mail news@gwhatchet.com so we can keep this list updated.

President

Michael Morgan

  • GW College Republicans
  • The International Affairs Society
  • Green GW
  • Cuban American Student Association
  • South Asian Society
  • Beta Theta Pi Fraternity
  • Alexander Hamilton Society

Julia Susuni

  • GW College Democrats
  • GW Women in Business
  • Club Sports Council
  • GW Chabad
  • Phi Sigma Pi
  • Student Alliance for Israel
  • Pre-Law Student Association
  • Student Theater Council
  • Student Bar Association
  • Student-Athlete Advisory Council
  • Panhellenic Association
  • Inter-Fraternity Council
  • Multicultural Greek Council
  • Jewish Student Association
  • Arab Student Association
  • Balance
  • Allied in Pride
  • MBA Association
  • GW Ballroom
  • Camp Kesem
  • Students for Education Reform
  • GW Men of Strength
  • GW Secular Society
  • Feminist Student Union
  • Black Student Union
  • Allied in Pride Graduate Students
  • Media Student Community Council
  • Indian Students Association

Hugo Scheckter

  • GW Golf Club
  • Twitter Account @FakeStevenKnapp
  • GW Monarchist Society
  • The Afghan Student Association
  • Twitter Account @GdubBro

Tywan Wade (*did not return requests for comment by publication time)

Executive Vice President

Kostas Skordalos

  • GW College Democrats
  • GW Club Sports Council
  • GW Pre-Law Association
  • Student Bar Association
  • Student Theater Council
  • Feminist Student Union
  • Black Student Union
  • National Council of Negro Women, GWU Section
  • Progressive Student Union
  • GW Men of Strength Club
  • Allied in Pride
  • Allied in Pride Graduate Students
  • GW College Republicans
  • GW Jewish Student Association
  • GW Medical Center Student Council
Michael Adam (*did not return requests for comment by publication time)
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