Junior David Hiltz is flying solo in the S.A. presidential election, while juniors Sarah Leighton and Theresa Sullivan, and sophomore Ryan Socha are running for the position of vice president.
Hiltz is both excited and disappointed that he is the one and only candidate for the race to be the next S.A. president, he said.
“Honestly, it’s nice not to be able to run against someone,” Hiltz said. “At the same time, it would have been fun because in the open forum you get to have a dialogue and go back and forth with another candidate.”
Leighton, Hiltz’s running mate, said she feels it is both good and bad that she is running alongside Hiltz. On the other hand, she doesn’t want to receive votes just because she is affiliated with Hiltz, she said.
As the junior class president, Theresa Sullivan has a lot of leadership experience.
(Photo by Kayla Sibilia)
“I want people to vote for me because of what I want to do as the vice president of the S.A.,” Leighton said.
Candidates with experience
Sullivan has been a class officer for three years. As president of her class this year, she has the experience to be the next vice president, she said.
“I wanted to do something different and help the whole student body because as much as I love helping out the class I figured helping the whole school would be better,” she said.
Socha, the youngest candidate running, became part of the Executive Board this year and has gained experience, he said.
“I chose to run for two reasons,” Socha said. “First, because I love St. Mike’s, and second, ever since I got here my goal has been to be outgoing and try to achieve things I never thought I could.”
The first step to becoming an S.A. candidate is collecting a certain number of signatures by members of the student body, Hiltz said. The presidential nomination forms require 300 signatures, while the vice president nomination forms require 200, he said.
Two weeks are given to collect the signatures, he said. The S.A. checks to make sure the signatures are valid. Then the nominee’s name officially goes on the ballot, he said.
Goal to get more students involved
Leighton and Sullivan work together as class officers, Leighton said.
“I work with Reese (Sullivan) right now, and you wouldn’t even know we were running against each other,” Leighton said.
Ryan Socha hopes to involve students more by using online participation.
(Photo by Kayla Sibilia)
All four candidates are interested in having a higher student involvement by using the Internet and online voting systems, they said.
Hiltz and Sullivan would like to make the S.A. Web site more prominent and constantly keep it up to date, they said.
Socha is also hoping to use the Internet to increase student participation, he said. Other issues on campus can possibly be resolved with the use of surveys, he said.
“I want to increase student involvement by using the online voting system we currently do for elections and see if we can apply that all year round on certain votes, such as amendments,” Socha said.
Somebody may approach the S.A. with a great idea in the middle of the year but, the way the system works, the S.A. may not be able to implement or be able to get that idea working until next year, Hiltz said.
“It’s a snowball effect,” he said. “So, if we can lay the groundwork and have that snowball continue to roll, you might not see the instant gratification, but if you’re in it for the long term, we can have influence and get things accomplished after we’re gone.”