SGA elections open: here’s what you need to know

Photo courtesy of Anjali Patel and Paolo Miyashiro, Instagram

The Student Government Association elections for the 2021-2022 academic year are now open for students to vote. There are 19 student candidates running for various positions.

A familiar name listed is Anjali Patel, who is running for re-election for SGA president. Patel is a junior law and society major with double minors in political science and civic leadership.

If elected, she aims to prioritize supporting BIPOC communities at Ramapo, advancing efforts with sustainability, easing the transition to a post-pandemic environment and bolstering school spirit and student life opportunities that are in-person. 

She is also involved on campus as a sister of Alpha Omicron Pi sorority, the co-editor of the Ramapo Journal of Law and Society, a peer tutor with OSS, a member of Democracy Matters and a member of numerous honors societies.

Her running mate this year is a new face to the position; Paolo Miyashiro, a sophomore, is running to be Patel’s vice president.

“If elected as vice president, I plan on working with the incoming SGA President and President-elect Cindy Jebb to ensure that all students, especially those that have been traditionally underrepresented, have their voices heard,” Miyashiro said.

The role of treasurer notes competition, as there are two candidates running for the position.

Chris Vedra is a first-year accounting major that is one of the two candidates running for treasurer. He is currently an SGA senator-at-large and is also an investment committee member for the Roadrunner Financial Group, the student-managed investment fund on campus.

“If elected, I would work hard to efficiently allocate funds for school or club related activities and ensure that each club and organization is properly funded,” Vedra said.

Running against him is Victoria Columna, a sophomore.

The school senator positions are also a competitive category with two students running for HGS school senator, two running for TAS and one running for SSHS.

Kimberly Santana is a junior international studies major running for HGS school senator. She is double minoring in political science and Spanish, and she is a member of Democracy Matters, Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, Sigma Iota Rho and HGS Dean’s Advisory Council. 

The current HGS interim senator, Santana plans to give a voice to transfer and first-year students while enhancing a relationship with OSS.

I will create an event to strengthen and maintain the relationship between faculty and students, and I would like to hear from students outside of the council and SGA to accomplish this as I will be taking suggestions and criticism,” Santana said. “I won’t always be perfect, but I will learn and be better.”

The other candidate for the HGS position is Gabriel Matthew Luyun, a sophomore international studies major minoring in computer science. He is a current SGA member and a political columnist for the Ramapo News.

“Should the voters elect me as the HGS senator, I promise to deliver greater transparency between my school and SGA,” Luyun said. “I will support and encourage our student politicians to execute proposals that benefit my school.”

For TAS school senator, Kristina Hollosi and Serina Sajjad are the two women candidates.

Hollosi, a sophomore environmental science major and ongoing senator-at-large, plans to implement ideologies presented through her major and her membership with the SGA sustainability committee.

“I’m passionate about climate science, conservation and systemic change towards sustainability,” she said. “But if elected, one of my main focuses in this position would be mental health and stress resources for TAS students, support and visibility for science students affiliated with OSS.”

Sajjad, a junior biology major with a concentration in osteopathy, is the current TAS school senator running for re-election. She is a member of the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion council for SGA, the vice president of administration and director of diversity, equity and inclusion for Alpha Omicron Pi sorority and is secretary of the Muslim Student Association at Ramapo.

“I am running for re-election so that I can advocate for better mental health awareness and practices for TAS students, who are often subject to a toxic, competitive environment,” she said.

The lone candidate for SSHS school senator is Ashley Gomez, a sophomore who is running for re-election for the position. She is also a resident assistant and a peer facilitator.

“I want to be able to foster open dialogue amongst faculty and students as well as providing more opportunities for all majors within SSHS,” Gomez said.

There are 10 students running for senator-at-large positions. Among those are four first-year students: pre-med student Misha Mathai, Elizabeth Black, nursing major Sannia Balgahoom and law and society major Aime Lara.

The four sophomores running include Christina Albetros, Mariam Tinawi, TAS student Brandon Han and law and society major Leah Berlinger.

And finally, two juniors are running for re-election: biology major Cindy Lam and political science major Helen Witte. 

Voting opens today, April 12 and closes on Wednesday, April 14. The link to cast your votes for the above candidates can be found here.