Thomas Bradley / Campus editor
The Oval gets crowded this time of year, but bright yellow shirts and a familiar logo make it easy to spot Undergraduate Student Government presidential candidate Travis Skaggs, a second-year in economics, and his running mate, Danielle Meyer, a third-year in political science.
Skaggs and Meyer said what sets them apart from the other candidates is their focus on getting one-on-one time with students and advocating for their specific needs.
“We had face time with students and that’s why our logo is ‘The New Face,'” Skaggs said.
The recognizable North Face logo ties together their ideology and gives students something by which to remember them. Skaggs said face time with students from different backgrounds and social circles was important to how they built their platform.
“We did a very organic approach,” Skaggs said. “We went to everyone and said, ‘What do you want to see out of USG? What do you want to see ultimately out of the university?’ And the result is our platform.”
The team said communication, especially on a face-to-face level, is what’s been lacking from USG in the past.
“We really wanted to see a change within USG,” Meyer said. “USG is a great organization, but the flow of communication isn’t right. Students aren’t really seeing all the good that USG is doing. People don’t feel like voting in USG elections because they think it’s a pointless election.”
Skaggs said problems they hear most consistently from students are about academic issues dealing with the semester switch, advisers and new credit hour rules, concerns that Skaggs and Meyer have devoted a large part of their platform to addressing.
“Our plan isn’t to make a new forum or panel or committee for that issue,” Skaggs said. “We aren’t trying to propose more bureaucracy and more voices to complicate the issue. Our job at USG is not to say, ‘Let’s create something new,’ it’s to advocate.”
Skaggs said he’s particularly passionate about their wellness platform which encompasses health, sustainability and safety.
“Safety has been an area of interest to me, and we realized that people have been wondering why we don’t get timely police reports,” Skaggs said. “The only ones reported directly to students are those within our campus or close enough to pose a threat to our safety.”
Meyer said she’s been working hard to support students who live off campus. One of the biggest issues is the housing hunt that most off-campus dwellers have experienced.
“Landlords are all on different schedules for leases and renewal deadlines,” Meyer said. “I would really like all the landlords to be on the same schedule. It would make students’ lives easier and we don’t need to have that extra stressor.”
Skaggs and Meyer said ultimately, their biggest concern is advocating for students.
“We want to make sure that right from the get-go we’re held accountable,” Meyer said. “USG tends to come every year in the spring and ask you to vote for them, and then you don’t hear from them for another year. Our main promise is that we’re going to listen to students.”