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ASBSU Candidates Debate

Four positions were up for grabs Wednesday, March 12 as candidates for the upcoming ASBSU election took the podium. The roles to be filled included: Assembly Speaker, Secretary of Student Organization Affairs, Secretary of Academic Affairs and Secretary of External Affairs.

“A big issue with ASBSU is people aren’t really aware,” said Megan Buxton, a candidate for Assembly Speaker.

Increasing student voice and participation encompassed a majority of the conversation between the two potential nominees for Assembly Speaker. The Student Assembly can house 40-60 students at once but usual participation sits around 15.

To fix this, Chase Neumann, also a candidate for this position, hopes to abolish the mandatory participation practiced already and reach out to groups who are not currently represented. He feels having people there who don’t want to be is taking away from students’ motivation to participate.

“You have to want to get involved,” Neumann said.

Buxton hopes to use existing means such as “Broncoproblems” online to see what ails students most in order to act appropriately. Her biggest complaint is the lack of participation which creates an “apathetic” environment, which she hopes to change.

Hailey Weatherby, running for Secretary of Organizational Affairs, stood at the podium alone as her fellow nominee Kendra Winnick could not make it.

A major issue pertaining to this position is funding. This year ASBSU funds ran out; for Weatherby, this is unacceptable.

“I’ve got a lot to learn,” said Weatherby about her experience in these matters, but “I’m excited to lean on people with that experience.”

Weatherby hopes to become a resource for students, not only allocating funds but introducing students to other organizations as well.

For the position of Secretary of External Affairs the main issues focused on were higher tuition and providing a voice for students to the legislature and Idaho State Board of Education.

Stephen Gustafson, a nominee for this position, hopes to advocate for better resources for students and will look at different ways to increase funding.

Gustafson feels there needs to be open dialogue between organizations on campus and that his past three years spent developing connections at Boise State can do that.

Also running for this position is Angel Hernandez, who believes in a far more radical approach to these issues.

Hernandez feels the current assembly system at Boise State isn’t working and if elected hopes to bring back the Student Senate. He feels strongly about the issues pertaining to students and intends to fight for minority groups on campus.

The two candidates running for Secretary of Academic Affairs are Christopher Bower and Rebecca Kopp.

Bower boasts an impressive record which he believes “speaks for itself.” He is running for his second term in this office and hopes to build upon what he’s already created.

Although Bower admits he didn’t come to Boise State wanting to get involved, he feels he’s found his place on campus.

“ASBSU has defined who I am as a person,” Bower said.

Kopp, only a freshman herself, understands the importance of younger students getting involved. Her goal is to eliminate some of the misconceptions professors and students have about each other.

Currently, Kopp is living in the College of Business Economics Living and Learning Community where students and teachers live together for this exact purpose.

“Students don’t know all the opportunities they have,” Kopp said.

She plans to help freshmen and sophomores see the opportunities they have regardless of the outcome of the election.

“The whole point is to be involved,” Kopp said.