Student Community Government elects new leadership, wraps up academic year
Student Community Government (SCG) will have multiple new leaders starting on June 1. SCG’s recent elections saw a new president, vice president, secretary, speaker and deputy speaker voted in, with the only incumbent running and winning being for treasurer.
There were two candidates running for president of SCG: SCG President James Torres and SCG Secretary Matthew Jacques. During his pre-election remarks, Torres withdrew his candidacy, saying, “I already made my mind two months ago I’m not running for reelection.” In a post-election interview, Torres explained what other factors led to his decision.
“I want to focus on building my businesses and focusing on school,” he said. “I love serving the students, but I’m here for school.”
Torres also indicated he’s eyeing a run for mayor of Warwick when asked what’s next for him.
Jacques won the race for SCG president unopposed after Torres rescinded his candidacy.
“Honestly, it hasn’t quite sunk in yet,” Jacques said. “But [I’m] truly honored to be elected president and I’m truly honored that they all placed their faith in me here tonight.”
The election for vice president saw a similar result as president. Current SCG Vice President Asley Corrales did not seek reelection.
“I had my hands in too many things honestly,” Corrales said “Once you’re involved with everything, it’s hard to kind of keep up and I had to just be real with myself. I wanted to keep running and be a part of it, and I still will be part of it for next semester, I just will be at a lesser capacity.”
Corrales will still be in SCG as an at-large parliament representative and has interest in staying on the Finance Committee. SCG’s Deputy Speaker, Frank Castello, ran unopposed for vice president and won.
“It feels very good,” Castello said. “I’m very passionate about Rhode Island College. I’m very passionate about students and the student government. And I think that it’s an excellent opportunity to really get lots of movement going for next semester.”
Castello said his top priority as the new vice president is increasing SCG’s visibility on campus.
Due to Jacques winning the race for president, he had to remove his name from the running for secretary. Gianna Rose, an at-large parliament representative, ran unopposed and was elected secretary.
The races for speaker and deputy speaker had multiple candidates. Current Speaker, Thomas Fura, cited his class schedule next year as to why he wasn’t running for another term. At-Large Parliament Representatives Shihren Brower, Jennifer Gonzalez and Gianna DelMonico ran for speaker. DelMonico won with a total of 13 votes. Both Brower and Gonzalez had five votes.
Brower and Gonzalez both ran for deputy speaker, a position they were runner-ups for in a special election earlier this year. In a closer election compared to the race for speaker, Gonzalez won the position of deputy speaker, getting 13 votes. Brower had nine votes and one vote was marked invalid.
Fathia Obabiyi, treasurer of SCG, was the only candidate who declared for treasurer and won unanimously.
During sine die, which took place right after SCG’s elections, another major departure was announced. Interim Dean of Students, Darcy Dubois, announced she is stepping down from her position.
“I just want to thank you for having me a part of this,” Dubois said to the members of parliament. “And I’m really proud of all the work that you’ve done. You’ve come really far in two years. It’s been a really long road and I think it’s time for me to step back.”
A national search for RIC’s next assistant vice president, student success and dean of students is underway. Cindy Kozil, interim vice president for student success, told The Anchor, “The position got posted in early April and it’s open until May 3rd for candidates to apply.”
As for the process, Kozil said there is a search committee composed of faculty and staff at RIC who review all the applications. The committee then does a first round interview of candidates who meet the qualifications listed in this job description. Afterward, those candidates are invited to campus to meet with the search committee, faculty and staff and students.
“We will put that out to students through our office or the dean of students email so that any student that wants to be involved and have a say would have the ability to do that,” Kozil said.
Kozil anticipates the candidates would be coming to campus “sometime in early June.”
After those meetings with members of the search committee and RIC’s campus community, recommendations by the committee are given to Kozil.
Kozil said the anticipation is that a hiring would be made “sometime in June” for the person “to start sometime in July so that they would settle in and be ready to go for student arrival in August.”