This year’s presidential race is between candidates Natalie Criscenzo and Perry Spiegel, and the candidates are hoping that their platforms will strike a chord with voters, propelling them to victory. Although each appears equally passionate and goal-oriented, The Review is formally endorsing Natalie Criscenzo for student body president. Her experience with the Student Government Association and on campus exceeds her opponent’s and her platform consists of plans that we believe reflect the university’s more urgent needs.
Criscenzo’s proposals thoughtfully include methods to create long-term benefits. Her presidential plans include assigning student affairs senators to pressing campus issues such as sustainability, sexual misconduct, LGBTQ issues and student engagement, which will expedite the creation and the passage of policies that will encourage improvements in these areas. She emphasizes student participation in the decision-making process by advocating for SGA members to work directly with other campus leaders and advocates. She also proposes bringing back the UDecide website to serve as an open forum for students to share ideas regarding campus improvements, a forum we think has the potential to fill a gap between students and administrators.
Criscenzo also has extensive plans to see her policies through, and is confronting issues that most students agree require direct action, such as attitudes toward sustainability on campus and increasing awareness of the resources available for victims of sexual misconduct.
She has been fiercely involved with SGA since her freshman year, evidencing a passion for the organization and its cause. Criscenzo has served on committees that directly illustrate her commitment to confronting the issues she has voiced concern for during the campaign cycle.
Both candidates discuss a desire to change SGA, each advocating for more transparency within the organization and monthly updates by elected SGA members. However, Criscenzo’s tenure in the senate, experience across multiple committees and extensive campus involvement, point to her ability to see these plans come to fruition. With Natalie at the helm, SGA is more fit to lead the student body with respect and credibility — something the organization lacked under Rojas’ leadership.
Spiegel’s platform does not adequately address the more pressing needs of the student body or the university. He has discussed plans to streamline communication between members of Greek life, City Council and university administration, but he has not mentioned how he intends to defend the rights of undocumented students or protect the voice of minority groups on campus. His platform — although it baits Greek life voters — is not particularly representative of the needs of the entire student body.
The Review staff has faith that Natalie Criscenzo presents a strategy that will break the SGA cycle to which students have become accustomed. This unfortunate cycle entails a lack of action on behalf of SGA, despite the numerous promises made by candidates before their elections.
To SGA’s credit, initiatives have been implemented, but evidence of their effect is almost invisible. Any achievement, more often than not, comes as a surprise, because proposals (specifically effective proposals) are so rarely passed.
The student body should be aware of what its student government is doing — and, most importantly, the student body deserves a student government that actually does something. Because we believe she could create change in SGA, The Review endorses Natalie Criscenzo for student body president. We encourage students to vote through their UD email during the upcoming week.
Editors’ note: Due to close ties to one or both candidates for student body president or to SGA, several editors, including Managing News Editor Michael T. Henretty Jr. and Copy Desk Chief Ellie Halfacre, were not involved in this editorial board discussion or endorsement decision. This editorial was developed by the rest of The Review staff, led by Editorial Editor Alexandra Eichenstein and Investigative Editor Margaret McNamara.