Meet your Student Government Association candidates: Abby Wendt
April 12, 2017
Business Administration, Marketing/Sales Emphasis
Current Position in Student Senate: Allocable Fee Appropriation Board (AFAB) Chair
Running For: President
Q: Why have you decided to run?
A: The simple answer: For the students. This would not be a university if it wasn’t for them. I personally have no gain from being elected other than having the satisfaction that Student Government Association (SGA) made this a better place for the students.
Q: What issues will you focus on if elected?
A: The issues I’m currently running on include campus safety, dining and inclusivity. But if I’m elected, these issues might change because they will be the students’ issues, not mine. When someone is a part of SGA, they are not going to focus on issues that they personally believe are important. What you need to focus on are the issues students believe are important to them.
Two weeks ago, I was running on an issue to completely light the back path because of the unflattering name it is associated with. After talking to students, it was brought to my attention that there were no reported incidents on the back path and that we should focus more on educating students on the resources the university has to support students when they are faced with dangerous situations. Because of the students’ concern, my plan is to still add lighting but also to rebrand the back path to eliminate the negative image it has and educate students more on the resources we offer.
This is just an example of the issues I will run on. Other current issues include all day meal transfer in the C-Store for the students who need to grab something and go, and teaming up with Student Affairs and establishing a Student Appreciation Week to not only thank the students for picking River Falls as their university but to also make everyone feel welcome and included.
Q: How will you better engage with students?
A: One of the plans I have to connect with students more is to have a table in the main hall of the University Center where students can come up to us to either ask questions or address issues they might have with the campus. I believe this will make SGA more accessible to the students so we know what they want us to accomplish for them.
Q: How can the Student Government Association be improved?
A: From past years, there has been a lot of segregation between senators. The entire SGA team needs to be on the same page. When a motion goes through, it is not because of one senator. Multiple people have a say or part in making the motion, having it approved and implementing it. I believe that when the senators work together as a team, we will be able to accomplish tasks more efficiently and effectively and get more work done in less time, because it is not fair for the students to be represented by a Senate that is divided. The senators are there to represent the students and their concerns. If Senate is on the same page, we can make this university a better place.
Q: Why should students vote for you?
A: I have been in SGA since my freshman year. This means I’ve been dedicated to this single organization for three consecutive years. My freshman, year I was a first-year senator, and after that I was appointed AFAB chair my sophomore year and have held that position for two years now. In that role, I’ve gone through three years of allocable and non-allocable budgets and have learned the entire SGA operations.
This is my senior year, and I plan on making a difference for the students on this campus for the issues that concern them the most. I believe that I am qualified to do exactly that. I plan on listening to students, being transparent and communicating with them as best as I can. I’m not running for student body president because it will look good on my resume, I’m running because I care; I care about the well-being of the students on our campus. If they are paying thousands of dollars per year, we should make this the best university it can be for them.
The Student Government Association election will be held on FalconSync starting at 8 a.m. Monday, April 17 and ending at 4 p.m. Friday, April 21.