Meet the Candidates: Spring 2019 SGA Election

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Voting for the Spring 2019 SGA election begins 11:00 a.m., Tuesday, March 26. Get to know who’s running before filling out your ballot.

Presidential Candidates:

Molly Aldrich, ’20, Business Administration, She/Her

Presidential Candidate Molly Aldrich

Photo courtesy of Molly Aldrich
Presidential Candidate Molly Aldrich

Why are you running for SGA?

I am running for SGA President because I see a system that is failing our students. The current model of Champlain is to satisfy the needs of the College before the students, and I want to change that process and reverse it entirely to listen to students and start to solve problems before there are major complaints made.

What makes you different from the other candidates?

I want to make real change with students. I understand the school policies and how Champlain makes decisions. Through my work this past semester as the Advisor for Student Advocacy, I have focused on major Champlain issues of mental health, Title IX and sexual health. These are core issues that Champlain has been thinking about and that students care about, and I have had an opportunity to delve into research and learn what students want changed on our campus.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

There is an unspoken code of Champlain College students that there are different kinds of students. There are video gamers, career-focused business students, skateboarders and so many smaller communities within Champlain. There has been an avoidance of this in the past, but I plan to repair this by talking about our differences.

By interacting with different Champlain students and not waiting for them to come to me, I will be able to accurately represent the student body and be what they need. The voices of some students have been louder than others, and this has been drowning out the smaller groups. I want to make sure that every Champlain student is being represented fairly on our campus and to the administration.

We must create a culture where the college interacts and reaches all students. When our college makes critical decisions that impact every student, they must be required to consider and involve multiple groups of students and not make assumptions as to students wants and needs. This is what I plan to do for the Champlain College students to improve the Champlain experience for every student.

What’s your favorite thing about Champlain?

My favorite thing about Champlain is that there are so many different clubs and spaces on campus so every student can find a home.

Who’s your biggest role model?

Ellen DeGeneres; She is always helping out the unknown everyday heroes in anyway possible.

What’s your favorite movie?

Pay it Forward.

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

Teleportation.

Riaz Clark, ’21, Social Work, He/She/They

Riaz Clark Headshot

Photo courtesy of Riaz Clark
Presidential Candidate Riaz Clark

Why are you running for SGA?

I am running for president because I have seen what the SGA can do, and I would really like to give some of that power back to the students. I want to see the students of Champlain College thrive, and that starts by educating those around me and standing with students on problems that need to be addressed.

What makes you different from the other candidates?

I know when and how to ask for help. I do not know everything nor do I claim to. One thing that I do know for a fact is then everyone needs help at some point, and the president of the SGA is no exception. I hope to surround myself with the smartest and most innovative students so that when I and others are having trouble, we will all have people to look to, and so as an association we can come up with solutions to roadblocks that might not have ever been thought of.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

I want President Laackman to truly understand what it means to be a student at this school. In my professional opinion, I do not believe he knows what we as students go through on a day-to-day basis. My hope, if I am elected, is to have President Laackman shadow a student for a day so that he can witness first hand our classes, our homes and our dining hall as well as the meeting and study time that so many of us factor into our day. I want President Laackman to be as well informed as he can be so that he can feel confident when it comes to making decisions that impact the student body at his institution.

What’s your favorite thing about Champlain?

I love the location and the community that it fosters.

Who’s your biggest role model?

My mother. She has worked her entire life so that I can be here.

What’s your favorite movie?

Call Me By Your Name.

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

I would want to speak any and all languages.

Vice-Presidential Candidates:

Maria Morales, ’20, Secondary Teacher Education, She/Her

Vice-Presidential Candidate Maria Morales

Photo courtesy of Maria Morales
Vice-Presidential Candidate Maria Morales

Why are you running for SGA?

After having held the position of VP for one year, I really believe that there’s a potential for growth within the association internally as much as externally. I want to develop the positions currently active inside of SGA in order to provide as complete of a representative group as is possible. Additionally, I enjoy the transparency and community that the current administration has provided for the general student body to experience and interact with. I’m running to continue these characteristics and hopefully further expand the ways in which the association interacts with the campus.

What makes you different from the other candidates?

I have the experience needed in order for someone to be successful within the VP position. I’ve spent the last year developing an understanding of how the Vice President best interacts with the student body, faculty, staff and other SGA members. I can offer this level of experience and knowledge in a way other candidates aren’t able to.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

The general understanding that the student body has on the SGA is limited to none. Our responsibilities are lost to many people and often the association is seen in negative lighting. I really would like to focus on spreading a well-rounded understanding of how we operate, what we do and eventually increase participation and engagement.

What’s your favorite thing about Champlain?

Admitted Students Day—I really enjoy seeing the excitement of prospective students. It reminds me that this is my dream school.

Who’s your biggest role model?

On campus, I strive to mirror Joanne Farrell’s collected demeanor, Kathy Leo-Nyquist’s kindness, and Jared Cadrette’s enthusiasm.

What’s your favorite movie?

Meet the Robinsons.

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

Tactile Telekinesis.

House of Representative Candidates:

Matthew “Trey” Cox, Business Administration, He/Him

SSB Representative Candidate Trey Cox

Photo courtesy of Trey Cox
SSB Representative Candidate Trey Cox

Why are you running for SGA?

I’m running to make the student’s voices heard and help every student that wants it in their journey through Champlain!

What makes you different from the other candidates?

I’m currently an RA and a club head, so I already have experience as a leader on campus. I’m also an interdivisional student and am taking both ITS and SSB classes for my degree.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

I plan on working on the Dean’s Round Table, as the current representatives are, so that Stiller students from all of the majors and years can get their voices heard.

What’s your favorite thing about Champlain?

The students!

Who’s your biggest role model?

All the teachers I’ve had in my life!

What’s your favorite movie?

Kill Bill.

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

Teleportation!

Emma Santos, ’20, Law, She/Her

EHS Representative candidate Emma Santos

Photo courtesy of Emma Santos
EHS Representative Candidate Emma Santos

Why are you running for SGA?

I’m running for re-election for one of the EHS representative positions because I have immensely enjoyed serving my constituents this past year and would like to continue to do so. Whether through grant processing, facilitating contact and conversation between students and faculty or attempting to resolve social concerns on campus, I have witnessed how much the SGA cares about the student body. Being a part of this organization and these initiatives has been a highlight of my junior year, and hopefully my senior year as well.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

I’d like to investigate further ensuring that the condom dispensers on campus are maintained since they are frequently empty and not serving their purpose. Additionally, expanding which female or gender neutral bathrooms contain sanitary products like pads and tampons is something I’d like to look into. Continuing to hold events that decrease the distance between students, faculty and administration is still a priority to me and I would love to hold more “Mix and Mingle” events.

Who’s your biggest role model?

Ruth Bader Ginsburg has been a huge inspiration to me, especially as a woman in law and her work with women’s rights.

What’s your favorite movie?

Pride and Prejudice (2005) and Lord of the Rings.

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

To summon coffee out of thin air.

Benjamin Sinclair, ’21, Computer & Digital Forensics, He/Him

ITS Representative Candidate Benjamin Sinclair

Photo courtesy of Benjamin Sinclair
ITS Representative Candidate Benjamin Sinclair

Why are you running for SGA?

I feel that Champlain College’s Division for Information Technology & Sciences is incredibly strong. Both faculty and students are comprised of extremely driven, talented and dedicated people, and I want to be able to aid students in their goals and communicate the needs of ITS students with the college faculty and administration.

What makes you different from the other candidates?

Even though I am a second-year student, I have been involved with Champlain’s ITS division since 2015. Knowing and familiarizing myself with Champlain’s culture and faculty has allowed me to better understand what students, faculty and staff can do collaboratively to foster an even stronger learning environment.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

While not directly related to ITS, I am currently drafting a bill to standardize mileage/gas reimbursement for those seeking grants with the SGA in order to further eliminate bias and uneven allocation of funds when it comes to grants involving trips. Furthermore, I have recently begun to reach out to ITS faculty members in order to hear their thoughts on how the division can be improved and what actions SGA can undertake to further the success of students.

What’s your favorite thing about Champlain?

Champlain’s focus on creating well-rounded and professionally competitive students.

Who’s your biggest role model?

Mr. Rogers.

What’s your favorite movie?

Galaxy Quest!

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

Telekinesis.

Aidan Wasserman, ’22, Law, He/Him

EHS Representative Candidate Aidan Wasserman

Photo courtesy of Aidan Wasserman
EHS Representative Candidate Aidan Wasserman

Why are you running for SGA?

I want to support the student body and create an open dialogue between the students, the faculty and administration. I want everyone to know that they do have a place on this campus and that there are people who care about them. If you need me, I am there for you, or if it isn’t me you need, I can help put you in contact with the people who you do need.

What makes you different from the other candidates?

Openness. One word. That’s all it is. I am 100% open about myself if and when it is needed. I put my phone number in my bio for running for positions, and I’ll put it in right here as well: (206)-356-5792.

If you need me, I will be there for you. Send me a text, if you need someone to go on a walk with or just grab food with, I will come spend time with you and be there for you. Every single student on this campus deserves to feel loved and respected. I’m ready to open my heart to any student on this campus without hesitation.

What are the major issues you’ll work to fix if elected?

As an EHS representative, I want to help EHS students get the representation they deserve. EHS is the smallest division on campus and yet we are 80% of voter turnout across Champlain’s campus. Polar to that however is the abysmal lack of financial support we receive from the SGA. We may be small but in the words of our division: “we do good work.”

What’s your favorite thing about Champlain?

I love the small little sect of arts on our campus. That might come across as a weird answer, but there is so little representation of the arts that each club is a gem of hope on our campus. I am involved in Purposeful Dissonance and the Champlayers and I perform frequently at the Grind. Every little bit of arts on this campus needs to be upheld and honored as a small glimmer of hope that shows that we aren’t just a school of nerds.

Who’s your biggest role model?

In all honesty, I don’t know who my biggest role model is. I try and be like a lot of people, and I look up to a lot of people but I couldn’t name just one.

I try and be humorous and strong like my mother. I try and have the drive of my father. But I guess if you really wanted a person I look up to I’d have to pick my sister. She’s actually younger than me, but she is funny and strong and caring and loving and smart, and, honestly, if I can just embody some of what I see in her during my life than I’ll have lived a good life.

What’s your favorite movie?

Die Hard. (It’s a Christmas movie and you can fight me)

If you could have any superpower, what would you want?

Teleportation. I mean like… Duh? There’s so many amazing places that I want to visit and I don’t know about you, but plane tickets… So expensive.


To learn more about the candidates and their views, watch the Candidate Debate live stream recording.

Ballots will be sent out by email. Voting closes 11:59 p.m.  Saturday, March 30. The results will be announced at the Elections Party 8:30–11:00 p.m., April 2. SGA will be providing free late night to all students attending the event.