By Elise Coby
Every year, SGA elects members running for the interest of the Student Government Association presidency and other positions, such as vice president, treasurer, events coordinator, external communications coordinator and many more. Each class has the opportunity to represent themselves through five officers.
This year’s SGA presidential election took place from March 24-30. The candidacy included Emmy Beck-Aden, Al Dean Jr., Katy Parisi and Tyler Thomas. Every candidate had a few days to campaign either through in-person advertisement or on social media.
The candidates also participated in a presidential debate on March 26. Voters could tune in virtually on Instagram Live or in-person in Phillips Hall of the Earl N. Phillips School of Business. Voting for the new class president and other SGA representatives was held via HPU Connect.
The official positions of the SGA presidential and student officer elections were announced March 31 via Instagram. Among the announcements were Parisi as president, Beck-Aden as vice president, Hannah Parson as secretary, Dezi Tulipano as attorney general and Jake Pardi as treasurer.
Parisi commented on the involvement that the election brought in this year.
“This year, we had the largest voter turnout in history,” said Parisi. “Overall, it was an overwhelmingly positive experience, and it was an honor to campaign in a race with three other qualified candidates.”
The election is a great way for the student body to come together and work cohesively to make HPU a place of their own by choosing the representatives they want to see embody the campus experience.
The enthusiasm and newness of the election bring together a tradition of leadership, authority and influence from each representative class.
“It’s really exciting to see all the students have their voices represented through their elected cabinet members,” Tulipano said. “The candidates were great. They made the process easy for the class officer election and were very positive to work with. We have a lot of previous leadership coming up from the executive council now, so we’re looking forward to taking everybody’s strengths and working for the entire student body instead of just our organizations.”
“The elections were successful. My favorite part was seeing the student body come together and get excited about electing their new representatives,” Beck-Aden said. “I’m hopeful that this energy and passion for SGA will continue in future years.”
SGA is planning to meet goals and start new projects for an eventful 2021-2022 academic year with the new representatives of the student body.
“The incoming administration for the 2021-2022 school year is excited to offer an open line of communication to our students, continue to expand on SGA’s and the university’s diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, increase sustainability efforts and value and respect every student who calls this campus home, while providing them with the best four years at HPU,” Parisi said. “We hope our reach this upcoming year extends deeply into our surrounding community, as High Point, North Carolina, is a home for all of us.”
Tulipano discussed the change in positions and what this upcoming year has in store with its new cabinet members.
“We are excited as an administration to work toward the goals we put forth in our campaign, which embodied the main campaign goals of engagement, diversity, mental health and sustainability,” she said. “The new class officers are going to try to move forward once COVID-19 gets better. Their goals are focused on trying to get engagement back up, especially for the underclassmen, and to get bigger events up and running that everybody looks forward to at the end of the year. It’s going to take a lot of working together between the class officers and the executive council to make things happen safely.”
As the fall semester approaches, SGA is looking forward to the incoming freshman class and welcoming students who are potentially interested in becoming involved within the senate.
“We are entering a year of exciting change, and our incoming administration is looking forward to increasing student engagement, developing impactful initiatives and providing a sense of belonging for every student,” Beck-Aden said. “We can’t wait to welcome our newest class of HPU students in the fall, and I’m particularly interested in building the senate into an action-oriented, bridge-building leadership body.”
Tulipano also commented on the upcoming year and her anticipation to work with the newly elected administration, who were sworn in on April 22.
“I’m excited to see what they can do as a team,” she said. “We’ve been working hard as a team to plan what we wanted to layout and what we need to work together on over the summer to make sure that we have a good plan coming into the fall semester. Seeing their goals become a reality and how that works out for us is exciting.”
Parisi’s presidency will involve great leadership qualities, community involvement, student well-being, campus-run projects and many other initiatives to make HPU a comfortable place for everyone.
“As the new SGA President, I am excited to carry on the legacy of Sam Carr and the presidents that came before him,” Parisi said. “I am excited to not only be a leader to the student body, but also someone that each student on campus feels comfortable calling their friend. In addition, I am excited to work alongside students from all around campus to further our development in leaving HPU a better place than we found it.”
For the next year, these newly elected students will become major influences within the SGA community and continue to work together to bring positive and innovative changes to the campus community.
Students can contact SGA at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their Instagram for daily updates, @sga_highpoint.