The kickoff for the Undergraduate Government of Boston College presidential race was held Tuesday night in the Vanderslice Cabaret Room, where the six presidential teams shared their platforms, slogans, and participated in games.
The final teams in contention for the positions of president and executive vice president are Anthony Perasso, LSOE ’17, and Rachel Loos, MCAS ’18, Russell Simons, MCAS ’17, and Meredith McCaffrey, MCAS ’17, Matthew Ulrich, MCAS ’17, and John Miotti, MCAS ’17, Nikita Patel, CSOM ’17, and Joseph Arquillo, LSOE ’17, Andrew Meck, MCAS ’18, and Jonathan Barbosa, LSOE ’18, and Ryan Fairhurst, MCAS ’17, and Charlie Butrico, MCAS ’18.
The six candidates were approved for the official UGBC presidential ballot on Mar. 1. A primary election will be held on Mar. 22 to narrow down the competition to three teams before the general election. The general election will be held beginning on Mar. 31, and voting will close on Apr. 1 at 8 p.m.
At the kickoff event, each team was given the opportunity to present its campaign to the audience. Teams revealed their campaign slogans, goals for their terms, and focused on their idea of UGBC’s purpose. Several of the teams noted the group’s past inefficiency to get policies approved, and their plans to work on diversity and mental health on campus.
Perasso and Loos presented first with a rendition of “Wonderwall.” They sung about their goals, poked fun at the other campaigns for joining the race past the original nomination deadline, and presented their slogan “Bring Back the Funk.”
“I feel various feelings about new candidates joining the race,” Perasso said in an email Mar. 1. “We are happy to have new friends joining the race, because we got a little lonely when it was just us two with no competition. The second feeling is surprise, because, as the only two original candidates remaining, we have become The Establishment Candidates. The third and final feeling is funky—do you feel it, too?”
Fairhurst and Butrico followed and redefined the goals of UGBC. Fairhurst believes that UGBC cannot represent one united voice of the students, but should rather work to connect students with administrators. The duo recognized their lack of power when it comes to policy, but they want to continue to advocate for marginalized groups on campus.
The presentations were then interrupted by the “Newlywed Game,” where candidates tested their knowledge about their running mates. They were asked to recall where their partners lived freshman year, what their favorite pick-up line would be, and what kind of dog they would want.
Patel and Arquillo then presented their campaign, whose slogan is “For BC, Not Just UGBC.” Their goals are focused on bringing more accessibility, relevancy, and service to the needs of the student body. Patel hopes to bring forth other issues on campus like students’ differing socioeconomic classes and put more of an emphasis on environmental concerns. They also hope to increase the representation for concrete programs that address diversity and diversity education.
Simons and McCaffrey revealed their slogan, “Strength and Unity,” and presented their official campaign video to the audience. They have three main goals that they hope to address during their term: quality, inclusivity, and accessibility. The team also noted that BC is undergoing its strategic planning phase and whoever is elected this year will have a major impact on the University for years to come.
“Student government is something that I have been doing for basically my entire BC experience and so it has always been something that I have thought about,” Simons said.
After Simons and McCaffrey spoke, the six teams played the “cookie game,” where they were challenged to move an Oreo cookie from their forehead to their mouth without using their hands.
After winning the cookie challenge, Ulrich and Miotti talked about their campaign slogan “Hype Up the Heights.” They referenced The Boston Globe’s article that showed the lack of attendance of BC students at athletic events. Ulrich and Miotti hope to bring back school spirit to BC, not only in academics but within other programs as well. They also believe that the individual student must be happy in order to have a spirited community, so they are focusing on providing additional resources for a mental health clinic.
To wrap up the event, Meck and Barbosa presented a “New Perspective,” as both students transferred to BC. During their term, they hope to make the transition from high school or other universities to BC smoother, provide support for groups on campus through funding, room reservations, and recognition, and focus on health issues from mental health to providing resources for the handicapped.
All six candidates were given the opportunity to wrap up their campaigns in a 30-second speech.
“We have nine new videos coming out in the next few weeks, but you will only be able to see them if we make it past the primary,” Perasso said to conclude his presentation.
Featured Image by Julia Hopkins / Heights Editor