COD students elect new officers for the 2017-18 school year

Vandy Manyeh, News Reporter

A record 706 students participated in the just ended March 14 and 15 Student Leadership Council (SLC) elections. This number far exceeds the 525 students who voted last year.

This was a result of the effort the Student Leadership Council (SLC) exerted to have more students informed about the elections.

“The SLC gets full credit for the increase in participants due to their proactivity in promoting the elections, reaching out to students, and helping students be informed about the candidates and voting process,” said Stephanie Quirk, coordinator of Student Life.

Anthony Walker, Safia Khan, and George Beck were elected as student trustee, president, and vice president respectively. The three ran together as a team.

Walker won with 397 votes, defeating his rival, Zain Rahman, with 277 votes. Khan received 518 votes, edging out her closest rival, Sam Tempestini, with 111 votes, and 468 students voted for Beck, while his opponent, Marcanthony Marciel, received 206 votes.

Walker will replace Luzelena Escamilla on the board and vowed throughout his campaign to make sure students are comfortable with voicing their concerns and issues so they can be addressed efficiently. He believes he has figured out a way to have more students involved with the SLC.

“By creating easy, open and convenient channels of communication it will keep COD students up to date with what is going on in the SLC,” said Walker. “If members of the SLC display authentic and genuine support to clubs during their meetings and activities, it will increase student participation in SLC-sponsored events.”

In an interview with the Courier after the elections, Walker thanked the students who voted for him.  He reached out to his opponent and said he looks forward to working with him in the future. Still unofficial, Walker attended his first board meeting last Thursday where he was introduced by the SLC’s President Kiley Pooler to the board of trustees and the college.

“My first board meeting was very insightful and interesting,” added Walker. “I look forward to working and collaborating with the other members of the board.”

Via his Facebook page, Beck expressed a similar sentiment.

“I am so honored to have been elected vice president of the SLC, and I cannot begin to explain how happy I am,” said Beck. “Thank you to my running mates Safia and Anthony for supporting me through this whole thing, even when I was stressed and busy, and always having faith in me.”

Khan who ran against two other candidates considered her victory as one of the most exciting experiences she has encountered.

“There was competition, enthusiasm, and most importantly some of the best sportsmanship I’ve witnessed,” said Khan. “I am beyond grateful to have been a part of such a wonderful experience with the best candidates.

“All candidates did an outstanding job, and I feel I have built bonds with each and every one of them through this experience.”

During the campaign, Khan promised to continue the council’s engagement with the administration to have a multicultural center on campus by encouraging the expansion of The Center for Diversity and Inclusion.

Walker will be inducted into office at the next regular meeting of the board of trustees. Khan and Beck will take office at the start of the Fall 2017 semester.