Association of Amherst Students Candidate Statements
Issue   |   Mon, 04/21/2014 - 22:41

Class of 2015

Peter Crane
Hi everybody! I've had the luck to serve this student body for three years in the AAS, and want to go above and beyond in serving you next year. Our campus faces many challenges, but with the right positive attitude and focus we can together get things done. Please feel free to send me a message, approach me on campus, or find my information detailed record and platform online. Thanks so much — stay classy, Amherst.

Kyra Ellis-Moore
Hello! I’m running to represent the Class of 2015. I have spent the last three years striving to serve our class and student body in varying capacities, as an AAS Senator and a Peer Advocate of Sexual Respect. I am heartened by the progress Amherst has made over the past couple of years promoting mental health, grappling with sexual misconduct, and increasing resources for students, but much more needs to be done. I am ready to work tirelessly for the cause and to spend my final year at Amherst in the service of the remarkable Class of 2015. Thank you!

Enkhnasan Enkhbold
I have enjoyed being involved with student activities on campus and offering assistance to clubs planning events.
As a member of ACEMS, rugby and other organizations, I know Senate can seem inaccessible and overly bureaucratic. Speaking with club leaders that come to meetings, those unfamiliar with the intricacies of Senate felt unwelcome. On the Senate Respect Task Force, we have tried to reform the Senate culture towards one of respect, openness and inclusiveness. The AAS is an organization of the student body, not one above it. I hope to continue fostering a culture of friendliness and cooperativity within Senate.

KC Fussell
If elected as a senator I would like to continue acting as a liaison between the athletic department and the AAS, attempt to further increase the accountability of senators to those who elected them and most importantly strive to leave Amherst College a better place than it was before I was elected.

Rama Hagos
Hello, my name is Rama Hagos and I am running for re-election to the AAS. I thank those who have supported me in the past, and I hope to gain the support of the class of 2015 one last time. This year, I have served on several committees including transportation, arts, elections, honorary degree, and financial aid/admissions. I have played an active role on all committees that I have served on, and I plan to continue to be an active member of the senate. If re-elected, I will work to improve campus life through programming that will actively engage students.

Claire Jia
Hey everyone, I’m Claire, a former AAS Senator currently studying abroad in Paris. I am running for re-election to the AAS Class of 2015. Being abroad has made me appreciate even more the life I have led at Amherst College, and having learned under a completely different educational system, I now understand more clearly what makes Amherst unique and what I can do to make it even better. I had an amazing time advocating for you last semester and would be honored if you would re-elect me to the Senate during our last year together. Thank you!!

Marie Lambert
Hello class of 2015, I would be honored to be re-elected to represent you in the AAS next year. During my time on Senate, I’ve worked to connect the connect the institution of student government with student need: by guiding clubs through the funding process as a Budgetary Committee member, to helping organize the Powerhouse planning committee and create more social space on campus. Next year, I plan to work make the Powerhouse a versatile space that this campus needs, as well as push for more AAS transparency through weekly updates in The Student and social media.

Sheron Torho
My name is Sheron Torho and it is my pleasure to run to represent the wonderful Class of 2015 on the AAS. I would love to be a voice for my peers by making sure more opinions are heard and that students are informed about the issues brought up in Senate, sooner rather than later. My main goal is to help students feel comfortable reaching out to different members of this community despite differences. I would love your support in working towards this goal.

Blaine Werner
My name is Blaine Werner and I am running to be a representative for the class of 2015 for the 2014-2015 academic year. My experience as a senator this year has been the best preparation for serving another year on the AAS. My experiences as an RC, club athlete and captain of the water polo team, and DJ and program director of WAMH have given and will continue to give me outside perspective. I will continue to represent the voice of the student body and be accessible to my peers for their input.

Class of 2016

Johnathan Appel
Hi everyone, I’m Johnathan Appel and I’m running for AAS Senate. I’m a sophomore from NYC who has been involved in clubs and groups all around campus, including Judiciary Council, Student Health Educators and WAMH. The time has never been better to reinvigorate the activist base of the Senate and begin to create real change by putting pressure on administration and faculty for our interests. Some of my ideas include gender-inclusive bathrooms and language, moving the QRC to the Campus Center, showing off student art and music in Keefe, and Select Dinners during Orientation to bridge the student-athlete divide.

Carlos de Bracamonte
Issues I’d like to address include:
Val’s operating hours and its impact on students’ academic work and extracurricular activities
Support needed for students to transition from a liberal arts education into a highly competitive work-market place and the role that Amherst College should play in supporting that transition
If elected I would bring to the position a strong work ethic and experience in student government as a two-year member of my high school student council. For the last two years two years, I’ve been part of the Amherst Leads program, which fosters and promotes leadership and teamwork.

Virginia Hassell
Hi friends!
My name is Virginia Hassell and I am hoping to be elected as one of your class of 2016 senators. As a female varsity athlete from southeastern Virginia, I will bring a unique, underrepresented perspective to the senate. I envision an Amherst where ideas are not just heard, but also actively addressed. My platform focuses on dissolving the athlete, non-athlete divide and providing senate visibility and accountability. Let’s start the conversation and tackle the issues that shape our day-to-day lives. Let’s work together to learn about these matters, and most importantly, enact change.

Sam Keaser
During our freshman year I had the privilege to serve and represent the class of 2016. Although personal reasons prevented me from acting as a Senator this year, I am seeking reelection for the coming term. If elected, I will push for increased operational transparency of the AAS (e.g. easily accessible attendance and voting records), expanded usability of Amherst Dollars to include retailers and restaurants in Town, and additional resources for the College’s Counseling Center. I look forward to continuing my work for, and relationship with, our class and hope that I can count on your votes this Tuesday.

Robert Kermes
This year as an AAS Senator I served on the Budget Committee, the Dining Services Committee and College Council (composed of professors and senior college administrators). In my capacity as a BC member, I actively helped clubs navigate the budgetary process to make sure they got the funding they deserved. In addition, through the Dining Services Committee, I brought back Late-Night Val. Next year, I plan to streamline and clarify the budget process in addition to starting a Val taste-testing event so students can decide what food should be changed. I would appreciate your vote on Tuesday.

Richard Park
I’m Richard and I’m asking for your vote this Tuesday. I’ve served on the Budgetary Committee, where I have had the incredible opportunity working with incredible senators and student organizations. Over the past two years, I have learned that instead of promising large goals, it is more important to be accessible. It is our responsibility to tell our peers what the AAS is doing. If re-elected, I pledge to complete the Amherst Bike Share Program by next fall, create "office hours" for senators in either Frost or Val, have more campus-wide events, and really make myself more approachable to you.

Phillip Qu
Hi! I’m Phillip Qu and I’m a sophomore running to represent you on the senate. Over the past year, I have gained some valuable experience on the senate. For my senate project, I organized a lunch series that effectively encouraged dialogue between students and faculty. Furthermore, I am very involved on campus, and I believe that I can continue to be a great representative of the class of 2016. Please, vote for me, Phillip Qu, for class of 2016 senator.

Ali Rohde
Hello! My name is Ali and I would love to spend another year representing our class. As the chair of the Elections Committee, I run the AAS elections and work to make the AAS more representative and inclusive. I am also the AAS representative on the Sexual Respect Task Force, where I am working on mandating that faculty provide trigger warnings before teaching classes on sensitive material. Last semester, I worked to extend Frost Café’s hours to midnight during finals week, and I hope to find more ways to improve student life this semester.

Tierney Werner
Hello, Amherst community! I am running as a candidate for one of the eight 2016 Senate seats because I wish to serve the student body in the following ways: I will work to make Val friendlier towards those with dietary restrictions (whether religious or medical), I will advocate for minors (so that we are not limited to majoring or not majoring), and I hope to make communication with the Senate as smooth as possible, so that the AAS can truly hear the voices of the students. My personal emphasis on listening, organization and my passion for making Amherst the best place for all of us makes me a strong candidate to be one of your eight Class of 2016 Senators.

Oluwatomi Williams (Tomi)
My name is Tomi Williams and I am running to represent the class of 2016 in the AAS Senate. I have served as the Judiciary Council Chair for the past three semesters and have gotten the opportunity to observe Senate closely as an impartial party. From this perspective, I have noticed some practices and efforts that need to be maintained and, even, enforced but also policies, practices and processes that need to be adjusted or gotten rid of. I hope to bring a good balance of innovation and experience to the next Senate.

Class of 2017

Karen Blake
I’m running for many reasons! Here’s two:
1. I want to increase transparency between the senate and the student body. Senators have an obligation to not only represent their grade, but also keep them informed on the goings on in senate. I propose a senate Twitter page where students could go for easy access to senate happenings.
2. I want to promote an open and friendly atmosphere in senate. I know it can be intimidating coming into senate to request funding or bring up an issue. I want to help make senate a place where everyone feels comfortable and respected.

Katarina Cruz Padilla
Hey everyone! I’m writing this blurb today to humbly ask for the honor of being reelected to serve as a senator for the Class of 2017. I believe that over my past year as a senator, I have proven myself to be as dedicated, approachable and involved as I said I would be last September. For the future, I am hoping to work on more campus mixing events that form organic bonds between people who otherwise may not interact. If elected, I promise to continue to work hard on making tangible changes for the student body. Please consider reelecting me!

Sophie Delfeus
I’d like to continue serving because I believe there is still much to be done. I envision Amherst being known for its dedication to ensuring that all its students feel supported once present on campus, and I am committed to making that possible. I have worked to present issues for first-generation and low-income students on campus and I hope to address even more issues for different student groups. I also hope to advocate for the seeking out of student opinion during senate meetings so senators are best able to speak on behalf of students. Please feel free to approach me!

William Herman
Representing the class of 2017 in the AAS has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my freshman year. I have enjoyed working with students, fellow senators, and the administration to make Amherst a vibrant, exciting and inclusive community. Fighting to make sure all the best events get funded, as well as advocating for important improvements in IT policy mark my two proudest achievements. I hope to be re-elected so I can continue to make Amherst the school it deserves to be.

Rashid Kosber (Chico)
Hello everybody, my name is Chico Kosber. And as a proud member of the Class of 2017, I would love the chance to represent you all this coming year as an AAS senator. The purpose of an AAS Senator is to relay the opinions, wants, and desires of the student body to the school’s administration. I am an organized, deliberate and social individual, and above all, I feel that I can effectively represent our class as both your senator and your friend. Please think of my name when you consider who to vote for in this year’s elections.

Raymond Meijer
I’m excited to run for the opportunity to represent our class of 2017 in Senate. I enjoy forming friendships with people who have a diversity of interests, ideas, and backgrounds and I look forward to responding to comments/concerns from the variety of personal connections I’ve established and from individuals, clubs and varsity and club athletics around campus. As well as being a reliable representative liaison to faculty and students, I hope to expand the number of outlets in the library and establish better waste management, amongst other ideas. I promise to be a responsive and down-to-earth class representative. Thank you!

George Nowotny
My name is George Nowotny and I would like to run for a Class Senator position for the Class of 2017. I was involved in student government in high school and truly want to be involved again. I will do all in my power to help my class be the best and most comfortable it can be, and I believe being a class senator would put me in position to make a difference. I want to work to improve Valentine Hall and the food situation, adjust the housing system, and encourage school spirit and attendance at all potential campus events.

Oluwatobi Oni-Orisan (Tobi)
As a Senator I have served on the Dining Services committee and the Powerhouse committee. External to my committee work, my efforts have resulted in projects to improve safety in the gymnasium and collaboration with the Music Department for more performances (e.g. Jazz at Val). If reelected, I will collaborate with the e-board to increase the transparency, efficiency and effectiveness of the Senate. I believe that I am a servant-leader and I have thought of the community that I represent before myself. A vote for me will ensure that your servant-leader cares for you.

Olivia Pinney
The Senate should enable you, the student body, to do the things you care about with greater ease. I propose making senate more accessible to the student population by organizing senatorial office hours, increasing the number of all school representatives on committees and making senate an avenue for student activism. Additionally I will increase the number of community-fostering events, like late night Val, which offer opportunities to relax and enjoy being together, but also those that provoke important discussions on campus. I want your opinions to be represented in senate decisions and I will make sure that they are heard.

Siraj Sindhu
I’m running for Senate because I love Amherst and I want to fulfill my duty to make this school the best that it can be. I promise to ensure that sexual respect stays on the table, work to make Senate more functional and Budgetary Committee more efficient, and look ahead to the future and the changing times with a cautious but inspired eye.

Joshua Thompson
My name is Josh Thompson. I’m a first-year from North Carolina and would be honored to represent you in Senate next year. Student government is an aspect of campus that has interested me since I arrived to Amherst, and I’m excited to have the chance to finally participate!
As an athlete, when I heard that only one varsity athlete served as a senator for this school year I was shocked. With that, I pledge to engage in senate to not only represent athletic interests, but also the interests of all students of my class.

Yujia Zhang (David)
Joining the AAS Senate is one of the best decisions that I made in my freshman year. Despite rancorous and lengthy meetings on some nights, I genuinely feel grateful for my time on senate. In the past year, I served on the budgetary committee. If elected, I will seek reelection to the BC. Besides, I will also work on the Tradition Committee and initiate First Year Seminar Reviews. Let’s try to make Amherst a better place!

Judiciary Council

Andrew Edelman ’15
For two years, I have been a first-year RC. The residents who have the hardest time adjusting are those who had serious extracurricular commitments in high school and stopped attending extracurriculars here.
I spent most of high school playing soccer. When I came here, I started playing ultimate Frisbee. It’s been the most important decision of my college life.
All this to say that helping new clubs form is incredibly important, and there should be more publicity about it. The JC approves clubs, so why not advocate for their formation? Why can’t the JC more visible in student life?

Molly Jordan ’16
My name is Molly Jordan and it would be an honor to serve on the Judiciary Council. I will use a thorough understanding of the Constitution and general bylaws to help maintain the integrity and transparency of the AAS. I will strive to ensure prompt rulings and consistent communication with the student body. Finally, as the Judiciary Council also serves as the Review and Recognition Board, I will work to raise awareness of the procedures and requirements for becoming a recognized student organization.

Aleks Merkovich ’17
The JC has three major tasks: approving clubs, reviewing the constitution and handling complaints. We are at a time where there are gray areas in all these domains, and as a JC member I want to make the distinctions more black and white. By being impartial and constantly looking to help the student body through my work, I think I am the right choice for JC.

Savannah West ’15
To the Amherst College student body: Hello! My name is Savannah West and it would be an honor to serve as a member of the Judiciary Council for this upcoming year. If elected for this position, I would work tirelessly to understand the letter and spirit of our Constitution and to encourage efficient and ethical procedures in the AAS. I can and will serve the Judiciary Council and student body with reasoned judgment, integrity and zeal. Vote for Savannah for Judiciary Council!