2023-2024 Student Association Election Candidate Platforms

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Zachary Kirstein – SA President Candidate

Community: Stronger Together
As your SA President, I vow to further develop the community on Southern’s campus that allows us to grow mentally, spiritually, and socially so that everyone feels a part of our home. 

In being a part of the SA Executive Branch this school year as the assistant finance director, I will use my experience and training to enhance our SAU community in the following ways:  

Mental health is going to be one of my biggest priorities as your SA president. Firstly, I will partner with LifeGroups and the School of Education and Psychology graduate students to provide support groups for students on campus. Secondly, I will partner with Hulsey and offer free massages throughout the semester. Lastly, I will be working with administration and implement mental health emphasis days on campus.   

I will be collaborating with OMM in creating a spiritual retreat once a semester for students to experience off-campus spiritual rejuvenation. This retreat will be open to anyone on campus who would like to participate as we grow our community closer and centered on Christ.  

One of the first initiatives as president will be forming a meeting with the heads of our cultural clubs and establishing communication and coordinating events and representation. In addition to our scheduled culture nights, I will host an additional cultural night where each cultural club is represented by our SAU community. In creating this event, my goal is to create a community amongst our clubs on campus as well as celebrating Southern’s unique culture- to celebrate us.

We will become a community that is indeed stronger together.

-Zach Kirstein  
SA President Candidate 

Jared Chandler – SA President Candidate

Hey guys!! My Name is Jared Chandler and I’m running to be your next SA president!! Here are some of the exciting ideas I have for next year!!

Ways to Increase Mental Health 

  • Mental Health Day: Finals can be stressful. To ensure that our students are mentally prepared to face finals week, I would like to create a mental health day the Friday before finals.
  • TEDx Talk: I’m going to organize a TEDx talk on a topic you choose.

Ways to Increase Physical Safety 

  • Title IX convocation: During this convocation we are going to have a panel of Title IX administrators available to answer any of your questions. This is going to ensure that everyone on campus has the proper information regarding title IX.
  • Emergency Towers: I want to add emergency towers on the way to Southern Village. This would ensure that any student walking back to their apartment will feel safe and stay safe. 

Ways to Increase the Spiritual Health: 

SA Sabbath AM Chats: I want to create a brand-new event called SA Sabbath AM Chats. This is an event occurring on sabbath mornings, where SA provides breakfast for students before going to church while creating discussions about sabbath school topics. 

Ways to Increase Social Events: 

  • Basketball Charity Game: I want to create a charity basketball game between our A league basketball players and Oakwood.
  • SA Culture Club Night: I want to create an SA culture celebration where SA unites the 4 culture clubs together for an event that celebrates our campuses diversity while developing our unity.
  • Club Officer Scholarship: Clubs are a vital part of our experience. I would like to create a scholarship fund to encourage capable leaders to take up officer positions to ensure our clubs run smoothly and create amazing events. 

David Lazcano – Executive VP Candidate

I have spent the last two years serving as a senator on our Student Association Senate. My time there has given me much insight and experience on what it takes to not only run the SA senate, but to also address the needs of the students. One need that has always stood out to me in my time in SAU is the safety of our students, especially in matters of sexual assault and harrasment. Students do not trust the Title XI committee and are often hesitant to speak up and defend themselves.

If elected executive vice president, my main goal will be to work alongside the administration to help better protect our students. I want to help bridge the gap between the students and administration, and to help students gain the trust of the administration, knowing that they will be protected. It’s not easy to speak up and acknowledge that there are problems on our campus. However, this is the first step to helping improve our campus.

It takes a lot of courage to speak up and call out what is wrong, and that is one of the platforms I will work on this next school year. I plan to uplift and exemplify the principles of courage, integrity, and determination. Courage to speak up for what is right, even if it’s the hard thing to do. Integrity to be accountable to not only ourselves, but also to God and those around us. Lastly determination, the refusal to give up, and seek out in accomplishing the goals we set before us. I promise that if elected vice president, I will serve you on these principles, and always put the needs of the students first.

David Lazcano, Candidate for Executive VP

Dain Ochoa – Executive VP Candidate

During these past few years, we have felt a sense of disconnect with our fellow peers. From COVID-19 lockdown to social distancing we have seen the effects that this event had on everyone’s lives, especially the social aspect. Unintentionally we have become accustomed to this idea of distance which has slowly turned into a feeling of distrust and indifference towards each other. Why does this matter? I truly believe that SA has the responsibility in breaking this barrier between all of us in order to create a close-knit community. My motto for this year as Executive VP is “Focused (on) Trusting. Engaging. Action.” All these points will play an important role in bringing the student body together and creating that home away from home that every student desires to have. 

I have had an opportunity to work in leadership positions all the way from high school and into college. I was also able to work with LAC as the Community Service Director. I was also privileged to be a student missionary last year where I was able to experience new things and gain valuable lessons that will translate into my role on SA. I have always loved being part of a team that makes impactful changes and leading senate would be another opportunity to do that. I truly believe in our calling as Christians to serve others and this position would allow me to serve my fellow peers. 

As humans we can plan various projects and plan for the future but if we do not include God then it will all be in vain. I truly believe when Colossians 3:23, 24 says “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” At the end of the day, I am here to serve this community and God and to create an environment that everyone enjoys to be in. 

I am super excited for this next school year, and if we focus on trusting each other, engaging in conversation, and putting plans into action. I know without a doubt that we will have a great year! 

My name is Dain Ochoa and I am your candidate for Executive VP.

Lauren Fenwick – Social VP Candidate

Hey hey! I’m Lauren. I’m a junior in Business-PR and a lover of people. I’ve really enjoyed serving the past two years as an SA Senator, and I’d love to serve you this next year as the Social VP of the Student Association. I’m excited to share my ideas and help lead our campus to have a fun and fulfilling next year.

My plans for some of our 2023-24 events include:

Country Theme Welcome Back Party
Movie Night
Pickleball Tournament
Gingerbread House Contest for Christmas
Decades Banquet

My motto as Social VP: Connect. Thrive. Grow. Together. Because together, we are Southern.

My vision: To create a welcoming atmosphere on campus, reach each student, and celebrate one another more.

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