Freshmen debate college issues in round of speeches

by Beacon Staff • December 3, 2008

bJosh Andreason

President, Class of 2012

Political Communication/b

Andreasen started off his speech describing his ideal day, which got a lot of laughs.

However, unlike his lofty daydream, he said he hopes to realistically guide his class and "not spread myself over five organizations: I'm going to give 100 percent of my time and energy to you guys."

Citing plenty of high school student government experience, Andreasen stood alongside his opponents in supporting gender-neutral housing for upper-classmen, as well as allowing all students free access to often roped-off Emerson facilities such as the Majestic Theatre and the Piano Row gym.

bAmanda Correia

President, Class of 2012

Visual Media Arts/b

Correia, an active member of SGA since "day one of Emerson," is heavily focused on college affordability.

"I want to make sure that the money we spend is going towards things that benefit our individual needs," she said.

She wants to extend the hours that the Dining Hall and Max are open and supports SGA's new policy on alcohol violations. Correia also supports gender-neutral housing after students' first year on campus, though she says it is difficult to come up with a hard-and-fast rule.

bRyan Wenke

President, Class of 2012

Theatre studies/b

Ryan Wenke spoke to the audience sans notes and, in his words, "from the bottom of [his] heart."

He said he values the sense of community he feels at Emerson, and is willing to fight for that feeling of being home, which he said he gets on campus.

He believes in gender-neutral housing for upper-classmen, opening stairwells in the dormitories so that students can walk to lower floors, re-vamping the guest check-in system and making Board Bucks and EC Cash work at surrounding vendors by selling their gift cards at the Max and Emerson Cafeacute;.

bMartika Mercer

Vice President Class of 2012

Visual Media Arts, screenwriting/b

Mercer admitted she was a bit confused by all the letters when she started getting involved in Freshman Class Council and SGA, or, as she described them, "the land of many ambiguous acronyms."

However, she said she comes to this elections as an "improved leader" who has learned a lot from her time with class council so far. "I'm ready to be a liaison between SGA and faculty," Mercer said.

bElizabeth Ball

Vice President, Class of 2012

Acting/b

Though she is an acting major, Ball promised the audience she wasn't only interested in "glamorous, front-and-center stuff."

She said she loves being behind the scenes and working for her fellow classmates to get their concerns across to Emerson's SGA. "Just because [Emerson] is one way when you come in, doesn't mean it can't be another way when you come out," said Ball.

bYareli Morales

Vice President, Class of 2012/b

An active Emersonian involved in the EVVYs, AMIGOS and Speak Up, Morales' platform was all about spirit and enthusiasm.

"I have no problem going out there and talking to people to see what they want to get involved in," said Morales, who hails from Tijuana, Mexico.

She also vowed to create activities that encourage kinship and community between her classmates.

"You guys are the best," Morales said at the end of her speech. "You make me happy."

bAdriana Guida

Class of 2012 Treasurer

Writing, Literature and Publishing/b

Guida started off her speech with a confession: "Emerson . I like math."

Guida, who was her high school's treasurer for two years, described herself as organized, responsible and good with numbers.

Guida supports SGA's 10 percent rule, which asks organizations who appeal to the SGA for funds to contribute 10 percent of their financial request.

"If we show organizations where their money is going by drawing up a budget for them, they'll be more likely to cooperate [with SGA," Guida said during questioning.

bMichael Callahan

Treasurer, class of 2012

Broadcast Journalsm/b

Callahan cited his experience with various student organizations, including Rareworks, the Musical Theater Society and comedy troupe Just Kidding Around, in addition to his current position as treasurer of the Little Building's hall council, as the base of his extensive experience working within the Emerson community.

"I'm not just good at balancing money," Callahan said, "but I'm a good representative of what Emerson is."

bJeffrey Coons

Senator, class of 2012

Digital Post Production/b

Coons took a less optimistic view than his opponent, opting to discuss aspects of student life that he thought Emerson needed to work on, including the hot topic of the night: gender-neutral housing.

"I think it should be available all four years," Coons said of the controversial option.

"People can't always fit themselves into one gender, and this option should be available for them."

bPatrick Lambert

Senator, Class of 2012

Political communication/b

Lambert belted out his love for Emerson - literally.

The freshman senator candidate included a lengthy acapella song in his speech, alternating jokes about Emerson with snippets of his platform, which included gender-neutral housing phased in stages, bringing in local, fresh produce to the Dining Hall and Max and eliminating Emerson's participation in Juicy Campus.

"Emerson students are incredibly hardworking," Lambert said. "I want to ask Emerson to return the favor."