One Undergraduate Student Government presidential hopeful wants to make several changes if elected, one of which would include calling the position something different.
Andrew Warnecke, a third-year in political science, said he would focus on a different aspect of the job for its title.
“I don’t even like calling it president of USG because I feel like if you say that you’re only representing the interests of USG. I like calling it the student body president because I want to represent the interest of the students,” he said.
Warnecke was not a part of the complaint filed by three other tickets against the Josh Ahart-Jen Tripi campaign.
Three of the opposing campaigns recently accused the Ahart-Tripi campaign of falsifying campaign expenses. The website “voteceliaandleah.com,” which includes the names of an opposing campaign, was registered in the name of the Ahart-Tripi campaign manager, though the campaign had not reported the expense. The USG judicial panel, though, reached a unanimous decision that the team had not committed a violation. The opposing campaigns who had brought the complaint forward – Celia Wright and Leah Lacure; Vytas Aukstuolis and Nick Macek; and Mohamad Mohamad and Sean Crowe – said they were not planning to appeal.
Warnecke said he chose not to participate in the case.
“I was left off of the thing, I’m actually glad about that — if they just want to go at each other that’s fine. My focus is the people of Ohio State. I don’t want to play around with petty politics,” he said.
Warnecke said he hopes to create a student government in which every student can have a voice.
“I feel like most people think, you know, ‘What’s the point of student government? It’s not doing anything for me.’ So, I just want to get more people involved. I feel like these USG people, they’re too much of an insider, and maybe they don’t know what really affects the average, everyday student at Ohio State,” Warnecke said.
If elected, Warnecke plans on running a “more visible student government.”
Warnecke’s solution would include a video blog that would explain USG’s decisions to students.
Warnecke said he plans to focus on tuition costs, safety issues and creating an open dialogue with university’s administration, and hopefully, state government.
“I really hope we can make more need-based grants and scholarships because if we don’t, we’re going to lose students to other universities,” he said.
The only other person on Warnecke’s slate is his runningmate Logan Recker, a third-year in public health.
“No senators, I don’t want anyone riding on my coat tails,” Warnecke said.
Recker agreed with Warnecke about tuition needing to stay as low as possible.
“We need to make college affordable for all students,” Recker said in an email.
He added that increasing security in residence halls would “give students the peace of mind that they are safe,” and also has plans to improve parking and preserve the Mirror Lake Jump tradition.
Jumping in Mirror Lake before the OSU football game against the University of Michigan is an OSU tradition that took place Nov. 26 this year.
Warnecke and Recker said their leadership and work histories qualify them for office. Warnecke was a Boy Scout, recently shadowed the assistant prosecutor of his home county and maintains a 4.0 GPA in his political science classes, he said.
Recker currently works as a supervisor at the Schottenstein Center, Recker said.
There are six campaign teams running: Ahart and Tripi; Aukstuolis and Macek; Ryan Hedrick and Nicole Spaetzel; Mohamad and Crowe; Warnecke and Recker; and Wright and Lacure.
Voting is open online Monday through Wednesday.
Warnecke said he wants to change the “bad perception” of USG, and Recker said he wants to increase students’ say in student government.
“We need a student body government that’s of the people, that’s by the people and that’s for the people,” Recker said. “I want to leave this university a better place then I found it by giving students more of a voice in student government. Andrew and I have said that if you give us the mop, we’ll clean up USG.”
Editor’s note: The campaigns were listed in alphabetical order by presidential candidates’ last names.