By NATALIE RICH /// Senior Staff Writer
The sparsely attended Associated Students of Lewis & Clark (ASLC) Student Senate Debate, held on Sept. 19, started with the sole junior candidate, Will Hart ’18, answering questions from the moderator. His platform spoke to the need for increased social interaction between student athletes and non-student athletes. He suggested ice cream socials, tailgate parties for games and other similar events.
“Just getting people out there on the field making it an event any time there are student athletes out there playing their hearts out,” Hart said.
He also mentioned a potential “date auction” for LC students to bid on, and win, a date with a LC athlete.
Hart also proposed that he would be focusing on legalizing marijuana on campus for students over 21. Moderator Drake MacFarlane ’17 asked Hart to clarify how he would go about doing that, considering LC receives federal funding, and therefore must adhere to federal law.
“We may be a school that still receives federal funding, but does not the state of Oregon and the state of Colorado? Many people [there] were not afraid to take that first step,” Hart said.
The Senior candidates, Sarah Bucknovitz ’17 and Torin Lee ’17, spoke next. Bucknovitz emphasized the need for “consistent conversation surrounding race, ethnicity and sexuality.”
MacFarlane asked her what work she would do specifically as senator, to which she replied, “Facilitating conversations that this campus needs to have … Showing up and making space.”
Lee said that he got involved when he realized that school clubs required senators to fight for them, and that it inspired him to find out what senators did. MacFarlane asked why Lee was the right person to do the job.
“Because I’m the one doing it,” Lee said.
Next were the sophomore candidates: Zack Johnson ’19 and Natalie Souders ’19. Candidate Ella Crawford ’19 did not attend.
Souders’s opening statement spoke to accessibility.
“I don’t believe our student senate has been accessible to the majority of the student body,” Souders said. “I want to speak for the student body and its needs, and I want to support the needs of our community by facilitating and encouraging policy reform.”
Johnson, a transfer student and self-described environmental activist mentioned his former experience in student government.
“I was involved with my high school student government and I feel like this could also be a very rewarding experience,” Johnson said.
He went on to address some issues he would like to reform regarding LC’s green policies, including the trailroom’s disposable dishes and silverware.
First-year candidates Kaitlyn Vlahoulis ’20, Hannah Posey-Scholl ’20 and Jaweal Hakoum ’20, closed out the evening. Candidates Matthew Stevenson ’20, Violet Betters ’20 and William Witmer ’20 did not attend.
“This campus is incredible … I want to listen to the various voices and represent their voice. I want to get them to care,” Vlahoulis said. Her platform included healthier options at the Trailroom.
Posey-Scholl focused her campaign on coaxing out the quieter voices on campus.
“I want to be the one to make everybody heard,” Posey-Scholl said in her opening statement.
Hakoum, who hopes to run for the US Senate one day, spoke to her specific plan to streamline student health care, which sprung from a personal encounter.
“I am very devoted to helping people, I am here to listen to everything,” Hakoum said.
Voting for ASLC Senate ends Friday, Sept. 23, at 8:00 pm.