Torch: Why do you want to run for Student Government, Inc President?
Mark Benavides: There’s a lack of excitement in St. John’s University. You ask yourself or your friends, is this really the place I want to be? I think too many times people will say a held-back yeah, yeah I got a good scholarship. I think SGI should be the main body in which drives the excitement of the student body. The current administration has done a better job in excelling [sic] it but why I think it’s more important to invest in this excitement, in this buzz about St. John’s is because at the end of the day we’re all going to be better for it, our enjoyment of St. John’s will be better for it.
T: How will your experience with SGI influence your potential presidency?
M.B.: I think working in the organizations committee is a great, great transitioning position should I win presidency.
Because I’m dealing with organizations and what’s the first paragraph of like any Student Government thing? “We are the parent organization of all organizations here on campus.” So I deal with organizations in a day-to-day basis. So I have a lot of experience in what makes an organization succeed and what doesn’t make it succeed. We have workshops, where we foster student leadership. I’ve been org chair for the past two, well two and half years. It’s really given me the opportunity to learn skills needed to run an organization in the right path.
T: What are you hoping to accomplish?
M.B.: One of the main reasons why I want to run is really to empower the student organizations and really empower the student body. In the past we give [sic] them the tools but we don’t [sic] really see it through. Another thing we would like to see other than empowering organizations, is seeing what the real problem is with the student body. It’s like, “Why aren’t you excited?” I personally love St. John’s so much and I haven’t doubted my affection for St. John’s at all. I love this school. Not everyone feels the same way. We really need to start using our representatives.