Elections seem rather dirty this year, with a whole bunch of mud slinging and an unnecessary amount of slates: “UNITE UCI” “Expect More. Get More” and “Rooted In”
The dirtiest race seems to be that of the most important position: President. Rumor has it (rumor being dozens of student reports) that presidential candidate Traci Ishigo has been running a smear campaign against this years only incumbent, President Vikram Nayudu. Vikram reportedly has had a very successful term saving students thousands dollars collectively, starting a scholarship program, and highlighting UCI athletes. This can be contrasted by his opponent Traci who has no Office of the President experience, is currently the chief of staff in another department, the Executive Vice President (“EVP”) office, and is accusing Vikram of not being transparent with fees and the budget. Ironically, the ASUCI budget shows that the EVP has spent over $25,000 of student fees to send 50 students to Sacramento for a few days. C’mon Office of EVP, really? Clearly Traci feels she cannot win on her own merits, and honestly we can’t blame her. There are two other candidates: Sam Shaw, founder of the dodgeball world record, and Sean Tannenbaum, who seems to be on the ballot for giggles.
The rest of the races this year seem to be a battle of the one qualified candidate versus those who just want to see their names all over campus for their fifteen minutes of fame. In the interest of time, we’ll give you a short recap:
For Executive Vice President the candidates are Benny Khorsandi, the new fresh blood that ASUCI is in much need for. With his experience advocating for mulitple non-profits, and working with assembly men in Los Angeles, it seems to be the clear choice over his opponent Andrea. Andrea Gaspar seems to think by just working in the office she should win. Her campaign comes down to saying UCI should be free for all students (doesn’t seem very realistic). And the last opponent, Ben Shui, has not been seen yet, who was probably put in by Andrea’s team to confuse people who wanted to vote for Benny.
The Administrative Affairs VP candidates are: Lena Hu, the only candidate who has actually worked in the office they are running for and who launched the first official UCI Farmers Market, Dillion Gamboa from legislative council and Dom Doan who will make sure “that our collective grievances will not have been in vain.”
The Academic Affairs VP has only two candidates: Nithin Jilla, the creator of Kenya Dance and co-founder of TEDxUCIrvine, and Neil Bautista from legislative council. Nithin has great promises for bigger and better speakers at UCI while Bautista has flexed his intellect with profound statements such as “our education should cater to the students.”
The race of Student Services Vice President seems to be the same every year with candidates who have worked in student services since freshman year and keeps the same structure and routine and thus the same mediocre concerts and events. We need fresh blood! That is why the best candidate is Vince Xu, versus student service veterans Jessica Phan and Hayden. Vince has fresh new ideas for events like Shocktoberfest and Welcome Week.
Be sure to check out all the candidates at http://www.asuci.uci.edu/elections/spring12/index.php before you vote Week 3!
What are your thoughts?