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Tuesday, May 17, 2022

2022 ASUCD Spring Elections — Meet the Candidates

One executive ticket, seven senatorial candidates and one candidate for student advocate are running this quarter


The following candidates are running in ASUCD’s 2022 Spring Elections for elected official positions in student government. The candidate for student advocate was not interviewed because they did not respond to requests for an interview as of May 8. 

Elections will take place from Monday, May 9 at 12 p.m. to Sunday, May 15 at 12 p.m. Students can vote online at elections.ucdavis.edu.

Executive ticket:

Radhika Gawde (she/her/hers), second-year political science-public service major, and JT Eden (he/him/his) first-year international relations and environmental policy analysis and planned double major — Rise!: Gawde and Eden, who are running for president and vice president, respectively, said they want to increase transparency on sexual assault and violence reporting and make it easier for students to report such instances. Gawde and Eden also plan to address academic accommodations, such as increasing the Pass/No Pass deadline indefinitely. Other accommodations important to their campaign include religious accommodations — ensuring the ability of all students to successfully attend academic obligations while practicing their religion — and more accommodations for students who menstruate. The two candidates also have a three point advocacy plan that includes institutionalizing the Aggie Aid program that provides cash aid for students, working with Transportation and Parking Services (TAPS) to make parking violations more lenient for students, housing voucher reform and addressing food insecurity on campus. Gawde has served on the Internal Affairs Commission (IAC) as the chair and is currently the ACUSD Senate president pro tempore, and Eden is currently serving as the IAC chairperson. 


Eustacio Alamilla (he/him/his), second-year political science major — Independents!: Alamilla said he is running for Senate because he has a passion for moving projects forward and wants to better connect students to resources on campus. He is currently in the position of unit director for Housing Advising for Undergraduates Students (HAUS) hopes to apply this experience to develop a unit director training program. His platforms include affordable housing, mental health and safe drinking habits. He intends to spread resources and knowledge to the student body through workshops if elected.

Juliana Martinez Hernandez (she/her/hers), third-year political science major — Rise!: Martinez Hernandez currently serves as the internal vice president of ASUCD, and, according to her, this role has given her a chance to learn about the association in depth. She currently does not get a vote on the Senate table, something she hopes to change with the upcoming election. She aims to carry out many of the projects that have been created during her term as vice president should she be elected as a senator. She also plans to advocate for safe animal research and has partnered with People for the Elimination of Animal Cruelty through Education (PEACE) to address UC Davis’ research with Neuralink. She also aims to expand communication between students and Senate through the coordination of a biannual ASUCD Involvement Fair, among other projects.

Francisco Ojeda (he/him/his), first-year political science-public service major — Independent: Ojeda said he is running for Senate because he wants to diversify the Senate as a member of the Latinx community. Although Ojeda has had no previous experience in ASUCD, he is confident his listening skills and like experiences will make him an effective Senator. His platform includes diversity representation, as Latinx students form 21% of the student body, and resources for survivors of sexual assault. Ojeda plans to work with a committees to tackle this issue, such as the Sexual Assault Awareness Advocacy Committee. 

Zeph Schnelbach (all pronouns), first-year political science major — Independent: Schnelbach said they are running for ASUCD Senate because they are passionate about mental health and addiction resources. She plans to work with the Student Health and Wellness Committee to make these resources more accessible to students. One of his ideas is to establish an Aggie helpline that would function to provide emergency therapy. Another one of Schnelbach’s platforms is advocacy for student workers, as they work at the CoHo and believe that having someone in the Senate with experience in that field is important. Schnelbach said she would like readers to know that while she is running for Senate, she is still a student and will always be acting in the interest of students. 

Julia Shurman (she/her/hers), third-year political science-public service and English double major  — Independents!: Shurman is currently a member of the Disability Rights Advocacy Committee (DRAC) and last quarter, she was operations director for HAUS. Her platform includes working toward making the campus more accessible, in terms of making more of the classrooms have lecture capture for hybrid options, and also working toward sexual assault prevention and mental health accomodations. She plans to incorporate more education programs for sober monitors as well as consent forms at social events. Additionally, Shurman will work toward offering accommodations for people with PTSD, depression and anxiety. Shurman said she believes her background in ASUCD makes her qualified to be an ASUCD Senator. 

Omri Steinberg-Tatman (he/him/his), second-year electrical and computer engineering double major — Independents!: Steinberg-Tatman outlined his platform stating he is advocating for “more financial transparency from the school, more advertisement of the ASUCD scholarships and then, something that is also close and personal to me is more communication between the school and the students, specifically in the STEM departments.” Steinberg-Tatman has experience working in local startups, working in labs and in being a part of an engineering team. He encourages students to get involved in ASUCD to help have a say in the decisions that get made. 

Priya Talreja (she/her/hers), third-year environmental policy and planning major — Rise!: Talreja said she is running for ASUCD Senate in order to make tangible changes on campus. Her platforms include increasing engagement between ASUCD and registered student organizations (RSOs), ensuring access to culturally and linguistically competent mental health providers and increasing student engagement with ASUCD. To accomplish these goals, Talreja intends to create an RSO representative position and listserv to foster direct communication with ASUCD, work with the Ethnic and Cultural Affairs Commission and Mental Health Initiative and reach out to the international and transfer student communities through their respective offices. Talreja has written legislation as a staff member for Senator Ambar Mishra and spearheaded projects in RSO leadership positions. She said she feels this experience will help her reach her goals in Senate if elected.

Written by: Sydney Amestoy, Kaya Do-Khanh, Isabella Krzesniak, Jennifer Ma and Chris Ponce — campus@theaggie.org

Campus News Editor Sophie Dewees also contributed to this report.


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