2020 Blanket Tax Organization Candidates
The Thresher reached out to candidates running for election in all blanket tax organizations: Student Association, Rice Rally Club, Rice Program Council, the Rice Thresher, Rice Campanile, Honor Council, Rice Student Volunteering Program and KTRU Radio. Candidates marked with an * did not respond to requests for comment, and their statement is copied from the SA’s website.
Currently, the only contested roles are: SA Internal Vice President*, Honor Council Sophomore Representative and Rice Program Council President.
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STUDENT ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT
Anna Margaret Clyburn, President:
My SA vision:
- Inclusive & Accessible. What’s the point of a Student Association if the student body can’t access it? I believe that the SA Senate atmosphere is too formal for non-voting members (or even some voting members) to feel comfortable making their voices heard. At present, it feels less like a dialogue and more like a presentation, which isn’t the purpose of a community meeting. I believe that the primary objective of a public Senate meeting should be to create conversation among diverse groups of people. In an effort to make this a reality, I plan on switching up our Senate, making anonymous Q&A forms a Senate mainstay, bringing in tables to give participants the opportunity to discuss amongst one another before sharing their thoughts with the group, and advertising the Senate agenda every week via email and FB. Because if you don’t know the agenda, how will you know when there’s something you care about on the schedule?
- Equity-driven. We need to be advocating for equity. The SA is a voice for all, but there are certain voices that haven’t been getting the same air time. We need to prioritize those voices and work together to ally with historically marginalized student groups, such as Black students and [First Generation Low Income] students, for the improvement of available resources and general student life. For example, we should be concerned that Black students are moving [off campus] at a disproportionate rate, or that our Diversity and Inclusion resources are struggling to serve their purpose, that public spaces are physically inaccessible or that certain student groups face systemic violence. macro- and micro-aggressions. The SA must be a space where students gather together to identify and address such inequities, together.
- Collaborative. There are certain groups that can handle things better than we can. It’s in everyone’s best interest that, rather than duplicating our efforts, we work with other administrative and student groups to achieve our goals. This could mean inviting certain student and administrative groups (prioritizing those of students) to Senate and asking them to lead a discussion on a challenge they’re facing or campus concerns or encouraging non-Senate members in student organizations to lead SA projects related to their areas of interest. This is of benefit to them due to the SA’s lines of communication with admin and students across campus and of benefit to us due to the higher likelihood of project success when in the hands of people that are invested in focused initiatives.
- Compassionate. What matters most is that the SA is a caring, thoughtful space where students can gather together and create a positive change on campus. It shouldn’t be something that is immensely stressful or frustrating (though any organization can take on those characteristics at certain times); it should be a group that contributes positively to all who interact with it. If you have ideas for ways to make the SA more compassionate, please let me know, but I’m going to do my very best to ensure that SA members (so, all Rice students) feel appreciated by the SA.
I believe that the SA President’s role is less as an idea-generator and more of a connector/supporter. Empowering student voices and ideas by connecting people to admin/resources will be a priority, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t a few things that I would personally like to see done within the next year. Some examples of those are as follows:
- Pursing changes recommended by the current SA Audit Task Force led by Tanner Reese and committing a group of students from a variety of backgrounds to addressing each recommendation with an opinion (ex. accept in full, in part, or not at all and why) and plan of action for implementing accepted recommendations.
- Formalizing active bystander training for all SA and club leaders.
- Advocating for the expansion of CTIS into a semester long allyship/interpersonal violence prevention/sex-ed (really a general “how to be a respectful person”) course to increase the seriousness with which incoming students take CTIS.
- Creating lines of communication between administrators and relevant student groups (for example, VADA students with the designers of the new VADA building) to ensure that student voices are taken into account when making decisions.
- Increasing SA transparency by (1) publishing voting records on-line and in monthly emails and (2) ensuring that all students receive the SA Senate agenda every week. Additional changes to Senate include finding ways to make meetings feel less formal so that all participants feel comfortable speaking up and making their voices heard.
- Working with the new Internal Vice President to improve the NSR program, perhaps by reducing the number of NSRs or integrating more leadership-development programing into the experience.
- Expanding the amount of face time between Senators and Presidents to encourage teamwork/collaboration between the two groups.
- Standardizing election timelines across the colleges and removing barriers to running for SA election after losing a college election
STUDENT ASSOCIATION INTERNAL VICE PRESIDENT (CONTESTED)
Kendall Vining, Internal Vice President (contested):
I decided to run for IVP and was driven by a few factors. First, during my current year as a 2nd year student, I have not held an “official SA role,” and because of that I was further able to understand student frustrations with Senate/SA, which caused me to want to run for a position like IVP that allows me to work from the inside out to improve the connection between the SA and the “SA.” It’s time to address how the SA currently is viewed as and not just what it strives to be: “Every student is a member of the SA” is a phrase that in itself still points to the “otherness” of non-voting, non-Senate going students. I want the SA to exude inclusivity and promote activity through it to the whole student body and not just be thought as exclusive to those who have a vote in Senate. Secondly, I have learned through my mistakes, failures, and successes in leading research projects and holding other leadership roles that communication is vital, and that I really treasure it. I want to ensure that not only are the committees of the SA are communicating with one another, but that the SA is communicating well within itself. Finally, I really enjoyed my IVP’s (Grace Wickerson’s) pivotal role in ensuring that my time as an NSR my 1st year at Rice was a pleasant experience. However, there were some things I didn’t enjoy, like how NSRs’ opinions were typically ignored or passed over, and how this brush-off was partially caused by a consistency among Senators to properly mentor their NSRs. I really want the NSR program to be the best it can be, and that is going to have to be achieved by some structural changes to the program as well holding Senators more accountable for their growth and providing Senators with tools and training to be able to help the NSRs grow.
--- [Expanded platform added 2/19/2020 at 3:01 p.m.] ---
I’m running for Student Association IVP for a few key reasons:
1) To establish a connection with the next group of NSRs (New Student Representatives) who come in and be a lasting resource and mentor to them, and to ensure that they actually are effectively taught about how the SA’s government works and feel needed and wanted at Senate.
2) My second year I did not hold an “official SA role,” and because of that I saw just how much more difficult it was to pitch projects, to stay in touch with the SA’s government, and to feel included in the SA government’s various campaigns—this needs to start being addressed and researched more blatantly and thoroughly. The SA’s government is too distant, and to fix that, it needs to work from the inside out--this means that the SA’s government must first fix itself before attempting to “fix the rest of the student body,” and in this restoration, it must then work to reach out to students
3) Part of the IVP role includes ensuring that various committees of the SA are communicating with one another and running smoothly. Since the IVP also generally ensures good internal function, I want to ensure that SA government members are doing the best they can with their jobs, and if that job is failing at its task, it must be addressed rather than gossiped about. I want to do a better job at making sure that communication within the SA’s government is much more efficient to ensure that the SA’s government can actually communicate to the student body.
What I Have Done
Led Yearlong Research on STEM readiness and Preparation at Rice
This research, conducted exclusively during our time as a private research group (we later joined an “official SA group” to release our data from) was pivotal to the possibility of creating an Academic Tutoring Center on Rice’s Campus, as well as researched and proposed a summer online alternative to RESP due to our realization that due to the source of RESP’s funding it could not allow for a complete expansion (COMPLETED RESEARCH, NEW GOALS FOSTERED)
Imposter Syndrome Treatment Research
Light Personal Research into adding a personalized touch in each prospective student’s acceptance letter to Rice (ONGOING-readying to delve into with the same passion I did as the RESP/Academic Prep Before Rice research!)
Developed my own personal Leadership Skills and Invested in the Rice Community
-Served as an O-Week PAA
-Served as an O-Week Advisor
-Hosting, Preparing for, and Moderating the new Rice-Wide Black Experiences Panel (BEP) 2020-Participated as a panelist in Martel-wide Black Experiences Panel 2019
-Worked with other members of my College during most of the fall semester of 2019 to search for new RA’s, and did my part to select RA’s based on what my college and class (‘22) asked and wanted for
Interacted and Connected with the Student Body not just Politically, but Socially!What I Promise to Do (and how I could do it, as I hope that my plans will change once elected as I gather advice, ideas, and feedback on them)
1) Reform the New Student Representative (NSR) Program; A plan to increase NSR’s presence in Senate, have a better understanding of Senate, and receive general support and mentorship
Possible, Tentative Plans to Achieve this:
- NSRs receive “Opinion” votes in Senate, which are not official votes, but will still be visible in the Secretary’s published document to help NSRs be much more actively engaged in Senate meetings instead of sitting there in silence. Helps the other members of Senate, voting/upper-class members, to take NSRs more seriously since this vote would cause NSRs to not only become more engaged, but to feel more engaged in learning about student leadership and government at Rice;
-Shrink NSRs from 3 to 2 per college (this plan is not premiere in my thought as necessary, but it is worth investigating and listing here since it could potentially be helpful. When elected as IVP, I would definitely like to gather much feedback from the SA and new governmental leaders about their opinions regarding this plan);
-Establish a “Mock Senate” night with the new Senators, NSRs, and Parliamentarians before the first Senate, which will actively engage NSRs in a way that will better prepare them and educate them than if they were to simply listen to presentations or to simply observe a Senate meeting or two (this night would simultaneously helps Senators adjust to their new roles as mentors).
2) Ensure More Effective Communication between Committees and within the SA’s Government
Possible, Tentative Plans to Achieve this:
-Have an increased changeover system that actively encourages training of new electees in which predecessors and new electees gather for one hour at a time in a shared space to eat together and get to know each other, as well as to provide the chance for electees to ask questions of predecessors (in the absence of a predecessor, like if a position is unique to two or one unlike the larger number of Senators who could take on multiple new electees if not all Senator predecessors arrive, an exec team member steps up);
-“Mock Senate” night could also be replicated before Changeover to give new electees, primarily Senators, a chance to actively learn from their predecessors who will be there to answer questions and guide them;
-IVP sits in on at least two of each committee’s meetings each semester so the IVP has direct contact with committees to both observe their workings and to act as active support to committee chairs;
-IVP sends bi-weekly emails (instead of monthly) to committee chairs to check on progress, and receive some sort of progress report (even if no significant progress has occurred) and also release to committees the progress reports made by other groups to encourage collaboration and diminish duplicate research...in these released progress reports, the IVP reads them and highlights/comments on them with comments that either refer to resources to help, a group that is working on a similar project, or just to comment a phrase of encouragement;
-IVP communicates regularly with EVP, President, and other executive team members to receive updates on Senators, their reports, and general announcements and progress.
3) Encourage a more inclusive and non-intimidating perspective of “the SA;” Be actively available as a Resource and Ally for all Students and Student Groups
Possible, Tentative Plans to Achieve this:
-IVP (and possibly EVP) makes rounds each month/two months to each college government meeting (other members of SA Exec Team could help with sharing rounds) to help make “The SA” less detached from the SA. This would also serve to gain firsthand knowledge of how colleges generally feel about SA Updates, how Senators engage with their colleges, and to observe and show support for college senators and NSRs. Their purposes will be not to interfere in college government proceedings, make announcements, or pitch projects, but rather to serve as a tangible representation of how the SA is finally not just available, but actively available in its branching out of where it meets at Farnsworth each week and into the residential colleges. It is the SA government’s job to heal its internal strifes, and then reach out to the students in the steady, active attempt to be the government that students want it to be. I want to see NSRs as support them as they grow in confidence and leadership skills at their college governments;
-Ensure that SA government leaders truly focus on their promise to represent all students of their colleges by discouraging the sole pursuit of projects and working groups as ways to best serve students who are underrepresented. Namely, as IVP I will work closely with other exec members to assess how the SA government’s members are truly focusing on their primary roles. For example, does a Senator truly focus most of their energy into finding new ways to better reach out to their colleges, or is that secondary to projects, proposals, and working groups they are pursuing?
-Demand and encourage the President of the SA’s government to always speak plainly when presenting and speaking of issues relating to specific groups of students, as well as for the President to avoid “grouping students together.”
Ashley Fitzpatrick, write-in Internal Vice President (contested):
[2/19/2020 1:28 a.m.] This section was added in later. Fitzpatrick announced her write-in campaign 2/16.
Overview: Balance, Empathy, Collaboration
These terms form the foundation of my platform, as these three areas best describe what I feel the SA has been lacking. Student leaders across campus face struggles in balancing their positions, academics, social lives, and other personal issues (finances, family events, etc). These extra commitments can cause an immense amount of pressure on the student, as they did for me, and can force students to choose between the things they want to do and the things they have to do. Following from this, the SA has not found a way to truly empathize with the entire student body and the different challenges we face. Leadership roles are competitive and come with so much pressure that we often forget to treat each other like people with lives and problems outside of our roles. College governments often become like a family or close friend group, so what’s stopping the SA from becoming a family? We need to form connections with each other and with those not in leadership roles. And once we are able to form these connections we must learn to work together and collaborate. This one is hard because we don’t always have the same ideas, perspectives, or pasts, but once we form a basis of trust and respect we can work together and be stronger teammates because of our differences. Student leaders in the SA have often ignored the fact that conflict is inevitable. We need to embrace this fact and adopt the values of empathy and respect so that when issues arise, we can approach them together as a team of Rice students.
Creating Balance through changes to the internal structure of the SA:
- The SA Audit Task Force is currently working to conduct an audit of all SA leadership positions. I plan to use the recommendations of the task force to inform any changes I make to the internal structure of the SA.
- Problem: At present there are too many committees that no longer operate efficiently due to outdated charges.
- Solution: The SA needs fewer, more focused committees. I propose we re-evaluate the committees each year to ensure that they are all continuing to be productive. This will likely result in changes to the standing committees every year or so as the needs of our campus change.
Who gets a vote?
- Problem: At present each college gets two votes: one from the Senator and one from the President. Concerns have been raised as to whether or not the President should be a voting member, due to their primary focus on college government. There have also been calls for New Student Reps and committee heads to get votes in the Senate. Due to these concerns, there has been discussion of adding a second senator per college or altering the number of NSRs.
- Why two votes per college? The intention is so that if a college is split on an issue the President and Senator could split their votes. However there is also an option to abstain from a vote that can be utilized in such cases.
- Solution: Using the information collected by the SA Audit Task Force, I would like to propose a re-evaluation of our voting system. For example, if it is decided that the College Presidents do not need or want a vote, then there would remain only one Senator per college but we would begin to utilize the power of the “abstain” vote. I would like to further explore the potential for NSRs to provide input on issues that arise within the SA, however I am uncertain that voting power is the way to do this. If the Senator is voting on behalf of the students, then those students include the NSRs too. There may be potential for NSRs to gain another influencing power. This topic is one that will be discussed in great detail after the release of the SA Audit Task Force’s Report.
Creating balance within the SA’s focus and charge:
Measures of Success
- Problem: The SA presently measures their effectiveness on campus through the number of projects completed. The SA recruits students at week one and immediately funnels us into the project production line. We brainstorm projects, plan projects, work on projects, and watch many projects fail. Why?
- Solution: Projects cannot remain our measure of success if we want to be a productive student government. Things change, campus crises occur, new problems arise and we need to be prepared and able to respond to those events. Success needs to be measured by the impact that our actions and statements have on the Rice and Houston community.
What issues can be addressed through the SA?
- Problem: The SA does not actually know what they can do. The SA has a lot of doubts and fears about tackling big issues, both on campus and in Houston.
- Solution: I want to remind the student body that the SA exists as a body to support student ideas and ensure that all student voices are heard. This means that if a campus crisis occurs, then we respond. We respond in a way that will ensure protection and support for the group(s) affected by the event. This means that the SA will likely not stay a neutral body. If the SA is going to support our students that means all of them, even when those students do not hold a majority demographic or a majority opinion on an issue.
Social justice projects & campus crises
- Problem: The SA has dealt with a lot of social justice issues and campus crises this year and has been uncertain as to whether we could actually participate in these discussions. This has given the SA a reputation of being elitist and only caring about issues that affect the majority groups on campus.
- Solution: If there is an issue affecting any population of Rice students or Rice’s neighbors, then we as an SA need to ensure that we are able to get involved and voice opinions to those in authority positions.
Caring for our campus leaders
- Problem: We expect our campus leaders to do everything and the SA is not immune from this. In fact the SA is one of the worst leadership positions to be in as it is now. The SA President often works 40-hour weeks with no compensation, and often without appreciation. We are very quick to be negative toward our student leaders.
- Solution: There needs to be a system of delegation put in place, which I am prepared to do as IVP. The burden of work should be distributed and shared between elected leaders. We also need to involve those who are not in leadership roles but who have a desire to better the Rice community. Before we criticize each other, ask how the other person is doing and if they need help. We cannot continue to work as 30+ individuals. We must operate as a single team.
Leadership and mentorship
- Problem: Many students are elected to leadership and mentorship positions without having had any real training on these skills.
- Solution: I propose that we integrate leadership and mentorship training programs into the semesterly SA retreats. I suggest that the exec team, senators, and committee heads all participate in these trainings.
Dynamic and collaborative platform
- Problem: The campus climate changes, student opinions change, and priority issues change. However, the agendas and objectives of the Senate have historically remained static. If an issue arises that does not quite fit within the platforms of those elected, it may fall through the cracks.
- Solution: My platform is dynamic, not static. This means that as I receive feedback and new ideas, I am open to changing my platform. If elected, I will also be open to moving in new directions as the need arises. The ideas of a single person are not the only valid ones, and because of this I want to collaborate with others on solutions before they are implemented.
- Problem: The SA has historically operated through a pipeline mechanism, meaning those selected freshmen year are the ones that stay involved in the SA. While other opportunities to get involved exist, they are not well advertised and are not easy to access.
- Solution: I would like to add a “hearing of the community” section to Senate meetings. This can be 15 minutes during Senate that are dedicated to listening to new ideas and problems on campus. Students would have the opportunity to sign up to speak at any Senate or show up to this 15-minute open hearing to voice concerns and ideas. Similar to the hearing of community, I would also propose that once a month there is an open Senator-Exec dinner where any student can join as a guest in order to learn about current issues and bring up new topics to address. There is also a lot of potential for the NSR role to engage more heavily with the student body, for example the NSRs could create issue or project videos to be posted on social media to help inform the student body in a more causal, digestible format.
STUDENT ASSOCIATION TREASURER
John Cook, Treasurer:
Hello everybody! My name is John Cook and I’m a sophomore at Will Rice. This past year, I have been operating as the SA’s Deputy Treasurer, and I want to continue next year by running for Treasurer. During my time as Deputy Treasurer, I have become familiar with not only the institutional processes followed by the Treasurer, but the magnitude of the Treasurer’s work. The Blanket Tax Committee, the SAPP fund, and the SA each have budgets totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars that must be managed with diligence and understanding for the benefit of the student community. My acquaintance with the contexts and procedures of these entities, as well as a detail-oriented mindset and strong work ethic, make me a candidate that I believe is well-suited for a smooth transition between this year’s leadership and next year’s.
Throughout the next year, I would like to continue with the administrative work entailed by the position, but also aid in adapting it to the needs of the students involved. Firstly, I would cooperate with the SA Secretary and university administration in publicizing the deadlines and total budgets for funding opportunities like the SAPP fund, the SA Initiative Fund, and more, while also clarifying the purpose of each. Secondly, I would also like to reform parts of the funding process in order to facilitate easier transactions between the budgets and the clubs involved.
I hope to represent the Rice student body in as full a capacity as possible! Go Owls!
STUDENT ASSOCIATION SECRETARY
Savannah Parrot, Secretary*:
Hello, my name is Savannah Parrot and I’m a freshman from Sid and a member of the cheer team.
I realized during O-Week that I wanted to be actively involved on campus. I served as a New Student Representative for the Student Association and spent this year learning how the campus operates and how to create change within the SA. I will put this experience and knowledge to work on behalf of all students.
Students lack information about who makes up the SA and what we do. SA isn’t just a collection of senators, college presidents, and NSRs-- it’s comprised of all 4,000+ undergraduate students who attend Rice. I joined the SA to create change on Rice’s campus and am committed to achieving that goal
In the next term I will:
- Ensure communication about the SA’s work is clearer and accessible to all students. I will hold secretary office hours to allow students to ask questions about and inform the SA.
- Expand the SA’s social media reach so more students are aware of our efforts and learn how they can be involved.
If elected secretary, I will ensure everyone’s voice is heard and they feel represented by the SA. I’m an outgoing and empathetic person who isn’t afraid to speak up for the people I represent and the issues they value. These qualities are essential for a representative of all residential colleges. And while I am a proud Sidizen, I am, first and foremost, a proud Rice University student.
Rice Rally Club candidate
Catalina Santamaria and Zack Murphy, Rice Rally Club Co-Presidents:
For us (Catalina and Zack), the purpose of Rally Club is to create a positive and inclusive culture for Rice Athletics on campus. We will aim to build a strong connection between the general student body and the student-athletes by promoting all sporting events and creating an excitement around games. In this upcoming year we will focus on creating more awareness for home games, placing a higher emphasis on our college representatives, and surveying students to understand what they are interested in seeing at our events. In our three years involved in Rally Club we have seen the progress made by others before us and we hope to be able to continue their work. We are extremely excited for the upcoming year and the new opportunities that it brings for Rally Club and Rice Athletics. We believe that those who come out to support our teams will feel the same way!
Rice Program Council candidates (contested)
Will Ledig, Rice Program Council President (contested):
I’m running for RPC President not out of love for the organization, but with the intent to fix issues with RPC that myself and others have noticed throughout the past few years, utilizing the skills I’ve learned as Hanszen’s [External Vice President], Treasurer, and Beer Bike Coordinator. Our slogan is “Reinvent. Protect. Create”, in other words, I want to reinvent aspects of RPC that I feel have negatively impacted the student-body, protect the more beneficial aspects of the organization, and create new initiatives or events that will hopefully benefit RPC for years to come.
In terms of more specific promises, I intend to:
- Revisit the Beer Bike fine system, and consider abolishing it altogether. Every year, RPC sucks several thousand dollars out of Residential College budgets for inane reasons like emptying trash cans full of water or crossing barriers that have already fallen over and offers no transparency for what it does with this income.
- Look into improving the efficiency of Beer Bike by having a third-party organization run the races or use microchips to more accurately track bike (or runner) times.
- Rework the RPC budget, removing what I feel are inappropriate uses of blanket-tax income, such as $500 for shirts for its members, $1000 for advertisement, and $750 for a private retreat.
- Treat the Residential Colleges as partner organizations, rather than sources of income, by offering fencing rentals for free and reworking Beer Bike fines (as mentioned above).
- Open up positions on the Executive Council to outside applications, who would then be voted on by the college representatives, pending approval by the President and Staff Advisor.
- Actively consult the student-body on the events that they enjoy and the ones they don’t, and critically looking at the attendance of events, being willing to cut those that don’t provide a strong return on investment.
- Increase transparency of the inner-workings of the organization, including publishing meeting minutes.
Samantha McClendon, RPC President (contested):
Hi everyone! I’m Samantha, and I would love to serve as Rice Program Council President. Through my roles in the organization as a committee member of the Night Owl Antics Committee, a Co-Chair of the Socials Committee, and currently as Internal Vice President, I feel that I have gained the skills necessary to lead RPC in hosting campus-wide events which build community and enhance the quality of life for all students at Rice. I have two major goals as President: to foster a sense of transparency within and outside of RPC and to support the planning of a diverse set of events – from gingerbread house-building and study breaks to Esperanza/Rondelet and Beer Bike – out of which all Rice students can find something they enjoy. I plan to achieve the first goal of transparency by continuing the initiative of recurring, open RPC office hours and by publicly publishing minutes from general body meetings in which all RPC committees provide updates on their planning. To ensure the creation of diverse events catered to the student body, I would like to publicize opportunities for Rice students to give feedback and suggestions, specifically by posting feedback forms after each event and by circulating the current suggestions form. I plan to use the resources available to me, including communication with Rice’s other student organizations and my experience from previous years in RPC, to critically examine the structure and inclusivity of all events anew. I will strive to ensure that RPC provides events which are thoughtfully planned and to lead the organization in creating valuable experiences both for Rice students and for the RPC executive board, co-chairs, members, and college representatives who plan and publicize the events.
The Rice Thresher candidate
Rishab Ramapriyan and Ivanka Perez, Thresher Editors-in-Chief:
We are very excited to serve the Rice community as the next Thresher Editors-in-Chief. We hope to further our mission of promoting the free flow of information on campus by acting as a designated public student forum and publishing articles relevant to the student body and the greater Rice community. This past year, the Thresher has tackled relevant issues, such as sexual assault, disability accessibility and mental health, and we will continue telling these important stories. As Editors-in-Chief, we also intend to increase transparency with the Rice community about our procedures and policies in order to allow more students to engage with our platform. As a student-run newspaper, our priority is providing a balanced voice on issues confronting the Rice community and we will continually strive to search for novel avenues to do so.
Rice Campanile candidate
Sahana Prabhu & Rishi Ramesh, Campanile Editors-in-Chief*:
We, Sahana Prabhu and Rishi Ramesh, as your editors in chief of the Rice Campanile, will showcase our vibrant campus life and capture the year of 2020-2021 in a multi-hundred page representation of Rice University. In order to create a book that represents Rice, we will cultivate a team of engaged staffers to invest in recording your experiences, good or bad. The final product will be something every member of the campus community may cherish.
RICE STUDENT VOLUNTEER PROGRAM CANDIDATE
Colin Chan and Amna Ali, RSVP President:
Colin Chan and Amna Ali have been actively involved in RSVP for the past two years. As a member of the External Committee, Colin has overseen bi-annual events like Outreach Day and monthly volunteer group outings to promote civic engagement among Rice students. First as a member of the Outreach Committee and then serving as head of the External Committee this year, Amna has fostered relationships between Rice students and local Houston organizations by collaborating with the Internal and Publicity committees to organize cross-campus events such as Project Pumpkin as well as partnerships with other Rice organizations. As RSVP co-chairs, they hope to increase RSVP’s presence both on and off campus by providing additional resources to service clubs, establishing and strengthening relationships with local non-profit organizations, and connecting students to volunteer opportunities. They will continue to support RSVP’s mission to create a positive service environment at Rice and promote sustainable service efforts in the community.
KTRU RICE RADIO CANDIDATE
Harrison Lorenzen, KTRU Manager*:
Harrison Lorenzen, a junior MTEC major from Will Rice, has been a KTRU DJ and board member since his freshman year. Host to both a general shift and a Broadway specialty show, he has spent many hours on-air. Behind the scenes, he has served as Student Engineer, Operations Director, and presently Business Manager. After leading the discussions to re-purchase the KTRU call sign last year, he looks forward to growing the KTRU presence both on and off campus as Station Manager.
HONOR COUNCIL SENIOR REP CANDIDATES
Amy Lin*: Hi, all! My name is Amy Lin, and I’m currently a junior from Hanszen. I’m hoping to be one of your Honor Council Senior Representatives next year. The past three years, I’ve thoroughly appreciated the opportunity to sit on the Council and uphold Rice’s academic honesty as a New Student Representative, then a Sophomore Representative, and then a Junior Representative. Moreover, as the External Vice Chair during my junior year, I have enjoyed being the liaison between both the Honor Council and Rice’s professors, and the Honor Council and the undergraduate student body, where my duties included sending update emails to Rice’s professors and giving the O-Week presentation for New Students. I look forward to representing the class of 2021 and will always be open to answer any of your questions about the Council and to discuss any changes to the Council’s proceedings.
I’m Sam Holloway, and I am running for re-election as a Class of 2021 representative to the Rice Honor Council. I have served on the Honor Council for three years already, and I am currently the Honor Council Internal Vice Chair. I appreciate your vote so that I may continue to help students navigate the Honor Council process in a fair and compassionate way.
Virginia Xie*: Hello everyone, my name is Virginia Xie, and I am a Junior at Duncan as well as the current Chair of the Rice Honor Council. This is my third year serving on the Council, and I am running for the position of Senior Class Representative because I want to use my time and experience to protect academic integrity at Rice.As the Chair, I have implemented several new procedures to the Honor System that benefit the Rice community. One example is the Alternative Resolution, which is a system that allows students without prior violations to receive a reduced penalty and an expedited process for taking ownership of a violation. This allows students to take responsibility and learn from a mistake. Another example is the new Time Limit Statute for Accusations, which allows a case to be dropped if 90 or more days have passed between the time of the supposed violation and the time the accusation is submitted. The Council recognizes that it may be difficult for an accused student to recall details of an event or collect evidence if a significant amount of time has passed. This time restraint on accusations gives accused students a fair opportunity to defend their case. As a Senior Class Representative, I would continue spearheading outreach initiatives to teach the student how to prevent accidental Honor Code violations. I want to ensure that the Honor System is fairly implemented and that it will continue to provide the trust and freedom students receive at Rice University.
Ricky Robinson*: My name is Ricky Robinson and I’m running for Senior
Representative on the Honor Council. I’ve served on the Honor Council for the past 3 years and in that time I have been heavily involved serving on cases as well as helping make improvements to the Council such as the alternative resolution letter and constitutional clarifications. I’m hoping to serve on the council one last time this coming year and would appreciate your support in allowing me to do so. Thanks!
HONOR COUNCIL JUNIOR REP CANDIDATES
Izzie Karohl*: Hi everyone! My name is Izzie Karohl, and I’m running for Honor Council because I believe that Rice students deserve to live and study at a university that is honest, empathetic, and fair. Having served on the Honor Council as an at-large representative for the past two years, I understand the importance of principled decision making and advocating for what I believe to be just. If elected to serve, I promise to listen empathetically, treat each accused student with utmost respect, and, if a student is found in violation, work to reach a penalty that protects the academic integrity of our university without being excessively punitive. Thank you for considering my candidacy; I would be honored to serve as your class honor representative this coming year.
Matey Yanakiev*: No question about it, the Honor Council is an intimidating institution. An accusation could mean some of the most miserable weeks of a student’s life, and even worse, being found in violation could have enduring consequences. Therefore, for the two years of my council tenure, I have looked at every case with an open, empathetic mind. I have listened to student testimony prudently; I have sought out evidence to present the most favorable picture of the student’s case; and I have argued, sometimes for hours, on behalf of students.To preserve the academic framework here at Rice, we must respect both professors and students. I am proud to have consistently voted for measures to ease students’ interactions with the Council—such as the Alternative Resolution—all the while maintaining the faculty’s faith in the Honor System. For two years, I have represented the students of the class of 2020 on the Honor Council; it would be my honor to continue for a third.
Rapha Onyeka: Hello! My name is Rapha Onyeka. I am currently a sophomore at Baker College, pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. I’ve served as a college representative with Honor Council in this past year, but would appreciate the opportunity to expand my role to the SA. As the Honor Council Junior Rep of the Student Association, I plan to: Foster a positive and reputable atmosphere of academic integrity while ensuring that everyone has an understanding of Rice’s Honor System policies; Make efforts to Inform the SA on the events and activities of the Honor council campus-wide; Become a Strong Advocate for academic honesty and the core values that uphold our outstanding culture; Ensure the SA becomes aware of its freedoms and help students abide by them to safely Explore the potential of their academic interests. I’m eager to help if you need me, but available even when you don’t. View me like a good neighbor (Statefarm), one who doesn’t crank the music too loud and always sends you holiday cards. You get the point: I’m just a call (or net ID) away
Kyler Foutch: Hi, my name is Kyler Foutch and I would be honored to be one of the Honor Council Junior Class Representatives. Having served on the Honor Council for one year as the Jones College Representative, I am well acquainted with the processes that make up a case, and the demands such a task asks of those assigned to the case. Being a member of the Council is a role that I value and take pride in, and I promise you that by allowing me to continue to serve on the Council, I will continue to uphold and enforce the academic standards of Rice University. I always approach each case with an open mind and do my very best to ensure the decision made is a just one. I realize that both the students and faculty of our amazing university trust each and every Council member with the weight of the responsibilities put before us, trusting that we will try each case fairly, with consistency, and without bias. Thank you for the opportunity to serve in such a role, and I hope to continue to do so for the next year to come.
HONOR COUNCIL SOPHOMORE REP CANDIDATES (contested)
Kaitlyn Crowley: My name is Kaitlyn and I am a freshman at Will Rice College majoring in Kinesiology. I am currently a New Student Representative for the Honor Council and want to become a Sophomore Class Representative for the 2020-2021 school year. I have learned a lot throughout this year about what it takes to make fair and consistent decisions that are in line with Rice’s Honor Code, and I want to continue with the Council to ensure that appropriate decisions continue to be made. As an Honor Council Representative, I also want to help make sure that students’ opinions on the Honor Code are heard and considered.
Abrar Mamun*: Through my experiences in the Honor Council, I have come to realize that this organization plays a pivotal role in creating a healthy educational environment for students and teachers alike. With that being said, there is more that we can do to serve our academic community. In the recent past, I’ve learned that many students are unfamiliar with how we carry out our work. The “mystery” surrounding our system serves as a barrier to the common understanding that we are trying to create between students and the Honor Council. Moving forward, I would like to take the time to help students become more aware of our causes and proceedings so that they can recognize our goals. As a Sophomore Class Representative, I will aim to communicate more effectively with the student body and work with other members of the council to create a system that fairly evaluates the accused. Involvement at multiple levels will ensure that I am doing my best to serve the members of our campus.
Adam Zowie*: I have experience. I served as an At-Large Representative on the Honor Council this year, and I participated in teen court as a juror in high school. I have adjudicated many cases and have the experience to make the right call. I am fair. In rare cases, the Consensus Penalty Structure may not fit the violation. I argue and vote for the appropriate penalty. I am rational. I make and will continue making decisions without bias or prejudice for the Honor Council. Vote Adam Zawie for Honor Council Rep. You can learn more about me at: www.zawie.zone
Diego Casanova: no statement posted
William Wang: no statement posted
UNIVERSITY COURT CANDIDATES
Jake Joseph, U-Court: no statement posted