Andy Chang believes that students come first.
One of his projected goals both personally and as Student Government, Inc. (SGI) president is to devote more time to student concerns and needs by strengthening the relationship between SGI and University administration as well as by personally meeting with student organizations in order to address any concerns they may have.
Chang, who is a junior, has served as vice president of Sigma Delta Pi (Spanish Honor Society), co-chair of the SGI Budget Committee and president of the Economics and Finance Society (EcoFin) where he enacted great changes. He attributes his qualifications to his time spent in these leadership positions, but specifically as president of EcoFin, where he took the lead on tailoring meetings to student interests and concerns and expanding the membership base.
This previous experience with addressing student concerns falls in line with his platform’s goals for next year.
His platform, CORE, stands for ‘Creating Opportunity and Realizing Excellence.’ Their three main areas of focus are to empower organizations, increase student advocacy and transparency within administration and to simplify formal organization procedures.
CORE has planned specific ways to achieve these three goals.
In order to empower organizations, CORE plans to explore the possibility of a pharmacy advisory council, reduce the number of mandatory meetings for organizations and reduce costs within SGI by increasing efficiency, yet providing maximum funding to student organizations.
Chang said that CORE would like to reduce mandatory Org Congress meetings so organizations will be able to devote that extra time to making improvements.
“Their time is precious. We are willing to put out the information they need and hold one on one meetings with each organization. There’s no better way to develop a working relationship [between SGI and organizations],” Chang said.
In order to increase student advocacy and administrative transparency, CORE plans to proactively relay student opinions to administrators when any major University policy changes arise as well as alert students of those changes.
“Students should be the first to know, and they should have a voice. We have a valuable opportunity with a new University president, who’s interested in what students have to say,” Chang said.
In order to simplify organizational procedures, CORE intends to simplify and centralize all guides for organizational procedures and facilitate the room reservation process as well as the funding and special allocation request processes.
“One of our mottos is that organizations should spend more time achieving their goals and less time filling out paperwork. We have spoken with the administration and there’s lots that can be done [to improve the process],” Chang said.
Although members of the CORE platform do not have substantial SGI experience, each has served as a leader in some capacity. Chang said that even though CORE members might not be familiar with SGI operations, their diverse backgrounds and expertise more than make up for that and will give them a fresh perspective as a new executive board.
“We have a strong ticket and it’s one I’m very proud of. Each candidate was hand-picked and has strong qualifications,” Chang said.