The candidates that assume the mantle of the Undergraduate Student Government president and vice president face the taxing responsibility of reconciling the workings of a complex institution with the needs of a diverse student body.
Although some of the candidates have listed their many combined years of USG experience, undergraduates need a ticket that is not only familiar with USG but with other on-campus organizations. This year’s presidential nominees will need to make an effort to collaborate with the student body in order to actualize their goals.
For this reason, the editorial board of the Daily Trojan has decided to endorse Chris Cheng and Nehi Ogbevoen.
Cheng boasts two years with USG, a tenure that should provide him a firm grasp on the bureaucratic workings of student government. His running mate Ogbevoen, on the other hand, has demonstrated his leadership capabilities in his work with Troy Camp, Dance Marathon and the Greek community, proving that he has a thumb on the pulse of student activity.
It is the pitfall of every USG election for many tickets to give laundry lists of ambitious and, in some cases, unattainable goals. While these lists are often attractive to the student body, we the students would be best served by promoting a candidate with realizable promises.
Though Cheng and Ogbevoen share many goals with other candidates, they distance themselves through their research, evidenced by the depth of Cheng’s responses provided at the USG debate. More importantly, the ticket has stressed increased accountability and transparency in USG operations, a quality that will not only increase student participation, but will also enhance the organization’s credibility.
Cheng and Ogbevoen also bring a necessary charisma to the office. For a student government that hasn’t always been able to engage its constituency, Cheng-Ogbevoen proposes a series of town hall meetings where students would have an open forum with USG representatives, removing the smog-like curtain between USG and the rest of the school.
Although Cheng and Ogbevoen might not have the combined USG experience of other platforms, we feel they bring a diversity and ability to reach out effectively to the student body that will ultimately produce tangible results.