Entering the homestretch
Student body president candidates put the finishing touches on a two-week campaign period Monday as the focus shifts to student voting, which will take place online Tuesday and Wednesday before the winner is announced Thursday.
The pairs, sophomore Tim Quinney and running mate junior Alexandra Eicher, and junior Rob Wilson and running mate Dylan Palmer, squared off in two debates in the last two weeks, finalizing their platforms.
For the first time, voting will take place through a new UNH-run website, wildcatlink.unh.edu.
Quinney and Eicher have placed a large focus on improving handicap accessibility, campus communication, and student senate. Wilson and Palmer have placed a large concern on sustainability including an emphasis on improvement of sustainability through student ideas.
Quinney currently serves as the judicial affairs chair of student senate and Eicher served as the campus structure chair.
Quinney and Eicher said that their experience as high-ranking officials in senate makes them the best candidates.
"We've been in senate - we know the strengths and weaknesses of it," Quinney said. "We have the experience that our opponent doesn't. Rob has been a senator off and on because he's very busy and involved with other things. We've been executive members. I think that's going to allow us to be very effective leaders."
Wilson didn't respond to numerous interview requests, but sent an email detailing plans for Wilson and Palmer's "brightest idea."
"It would be similar to the undergraduate research project," Wilson said. "Students would come up with an idea to improve sustainability at UNH or in the area. If approved, the funding for that idea would already be available through an optional checkbox on student's bills. Students would be able to put five or ten dollars in if they chose to."
Wilson said that the plan could raise up to $120,000, even if only 10 percent of undergraduates donated to the optional fund. That would mean that each student in the 10 percent who chose to partcipate would need to provide $100.
"Students could use that to make the world a greener place," Wilson wrote. "I wore a green boa around campus to support this idea."
In flyers passed out around campus, Wilson also wrote that plans for implementing a new gym, making advising more transparent, and working on making it easier to repeal parking tickets are on his agenda.
While Quinney noted that expanding the gym was important, he said that there are more important changes that need to be made and that improving the gym will be up to funding and not a decision that he could directly make.
"Students would love a new gym," Quinney said, "but we have some critical needs that need to be addressed for academic purposes. [We] can't say it's feasible or not feasible because that depends on funding. But if you look at the campus master plan, it identifies critical buildings that need attention."
Quinney and Eicher, who are both involved in Greek life, have also discussed ways to improve the Greek system.
Eicher said she'd like to change some aspects of the Greek Performance & Excellence Program Standings, which rank Greek chapters in a point system.
"I'd like to have a basic template, with separate things for each individual fraternity and sorority chapter, which would make members more interested in going with the program because it aligns with their goals."
Quinney and Eicher also discussed utilizing student senate to better represent the desires of students and ways to open communication and a sense of involvement amongst students.
"We all pay to be here," Eicher said. "You should care 'cause you pay a crap load to be here. You should want to be involved, and we want to make it as easy as possible for you [as a student] to have your say."
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