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Monday, July 24, 2017




Recently-elected Student Union members take office




Students voted to fill up remaining seats in the Undergraduate Student Union Winter 2017 Election on Feb. 2.

Alex Feldman ’19 and Winnie Zhao ’20 won the available two-semester positions on the Allocations Board.

Feldman received 245 votes of the 560 that were cast, while Zhao won 159 votes. An additional three-semester seat went to Yaoyao Gao ’20, who received 159 votes out of a total of 481.

Feldman was previously chair of the Allocations Board, having been replaced by Emma Russell ’19. In an interview with the Justice, he spoke about ongoing Allocations Board projects like the Brandeis Experimental Event Programming grant, which would promote large-scale club events on campus.

Feldman also talked about working with Chief Diversity Officer Mark Brimhall-Vargas to analyze trends in club funding and allocations.

Alex Xu ’19 won the two-semester racial minority seat on the Allocations Board with 84 votes out of the 249 total. Xu narrowly defeated La’Dericka Hall ’19 by a margin of two votes.

As members of the Allocations Board, they will meet on a weekly basis to determine the use of the Student Activities Fund for secured and chartered clubs. Those clubs are, in turn, to be recognized by the Senate.

As quoted in a Jan. 30 Justice article, Feldman aims to address the funding of secured clubs, pointing out that there is “a lot of money that goes away with not much scrutiny.”

The Senator-at-Large seat went to Matt Smetana ’17, who received 382 out of the 488 total votes cast. As reported in a Jan. 30 Justice article, he has emphasized the need for greener energy on campus.

“Brandeis has been consistently more energy-intensive (and wasteful) than all comparable universities with similar infrastructure, size and climate,” Smetana wrote in an email to the Justice.

“There is a lot that Brandeis has started doing to reduce its carbon footprint, but there is a lot that still needs to be done.”

Meanwhile, Dana Brown ’20 won the position of Midyear Senator with 27 votes out of 54, and Brandon Stanaway ’19 won that of Ziv Quad Senator with 38 out of the 51 votes cast.

In an interview with the Justice, Stanaway also pointed to the need for a more sustainable campus. Additionally, he said that as the representative of Ziv, he wants to “[make] sure people know about what resources are available through the [Community Advisors], through Student Union.” Among these resources, he said, students can borrow sleeping bags and vacuum cleaners.

“Being part of Student Union will help me promote the things that are already there and help create change based upon what people want,” Stanaway said. “I want people to come and say hello, come and tell me what they want, tell me their problems, tell me things they like, so I can enact as much change as I can in this semester when I’m representing them.”

Abstaining voters came out in great numbers for the seats of Ridgewood Quad Senator, Charles River/567 Apartments Senator and Mods Quad Senator.

In the vote for Ridgewood Quad Senator, 11 out of 22 abstained, as well as 9 out of 23 for Charles River/567 Apartments Senator and 6 out of 20 for Mods Quad Senator. In line with the Undergraduate Student Union constitution, those three seats will remain vacant until the next election because more people abstained than voted for any of the given candidates.


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