In an hour-long special elections meeting held in the senate chambers at 5 p.m. on Monday, May 23, ASUCR convened to hold its inaugural meeting with the newly elected senators, directors and executive cabinet members, and to appoint next year’s representatives for the positions of vice president of finance, elections director, Green Campus Action Plan (GCAP) director and president pro tempore.
In her opening address to the senate, Executive Vice President Wen-Yu Chou congratulated her colleagues on their election to the horseshoe, and urged them to fulfill their duties as senators, saying, “Our work begins now, so I hope you all will do your best to serve the students, and represent the students that elected you all.”
First to speak was Kevin Tseng, a third-year business administration major, who presented his qualifications for the position of vice president of finance. Tseng cited the “numerous internships” he has had, along with his service as both the executive secretary of finance this past year, as well as his role in being an advancement ambassador for UC Riverside. When asked about what he plans to achieve under this position for the upcoming year, Tseng said he plans on “meeting senators and making sure that everyone is in constant communication.” He also expressed his desire to ensure more transparency and accountability from ASUCR. Tseng was appointed to the position of vice president of finance unanimously.
The senate then listened to Brandon Higa, a third-year political science major, the potential appointee for elections director. Higa, who is a member of the Phi Alpha Delta law fraternity, envisioned a smoother election with “regulation on laptopping … and the amendment of the elections code.” He said he wanted to improve the debates that the candidates participated in so that students have the “opportunity to pick the right candidate for the job, not someone based on popularity.” Many of the senators scrutinized Higa on his views of laptopping, arguing he was unclear on specifically how or to what extent he wanted to regulate laptopping. After a vote of 3-6-7, Higa failed to be appointed to the position, which is tabled until another candidate is chosen next year.
Bryan Martinez, a third-year sustainability major and candidate for GCAP director, spoke to the senate about his qualifications for the position. One of the goals that Martinez discussed for GCAP director next year included turning the current GCAP committee into an organization that “spearheads innovative projects designed to make our campus more sustainable while involving as many students as possible.” He revealed how this goal could be accomplished with the creation of a GCAP Board, which he hopes to be a “passionate group of leaders that (would) fully strive to improve our campus.” Overall, Martinez’s mission is for every student to know that their GCAP director is making “every effort possible to provide a clean and healthy environment for them to learn in.” His appointment as GCAP director passed 15-0-0.