I’m a junior biology major, on the Pre-Med track, from Long Island, NY. On campus I am currently the Parliamentarian of Student Senate, Philanthropy Chair of Kappa Delta Rho, a member of the YCP SpartaNation RoadCrew, a Student Ambassador, a member of Order of Omega and an Orientation Leader. I also serve as a Lieutenant with York Area United Volunteer Fire and Rescue.
Why are you running for Student Senate? What prompted you to want to occupy, arguably, the highest office for a student at the college?
If I see a problem, I want to be a part of the solution and that’s why I want to be your next Student Senate President. These past three years, I have worked diligently to do what I can, to make the York College experience a better one for students. As President, I want to continue to help York College, but more importantly, I want to enable others to help make York College better.
What do you think makes you the best choice for the students? How do you differ from other candidates? Do you think that there are any crucial disagreements with your opponents?
As the only candidate who has served on all three levels of Student Senate (General Senator, Executive Cabinet Member, and Executive Board Member), I think I am the best choice to lead Student Senate for the 2016-2017 academic year. My current extracurricular activities have taught me a few valuable lessons that I can bring to Student Senate. The most important is working with others. As President, I will have to interact with students as well as members of the York Community. I consider myself to be a very competent speaker and am able to express myself clearly.
I disagree with Steve’s plan to end ticketing on campus. Lack of enforcement will lead to abuse of the system and reduce availability for commuters and faculty/staff to park. I have also been in contact with administration regarding mandatory food plans for those who don’t have kitchens. They informed me that PA law requires that we keep this food plan in place to ensure access to proper food.
Another very big grievance that I have is ending Student Senate requirements for organizations to attend two Senate Meetings and an EXCEL event. The purpose of Senate meetings is to keep students informed on campus and let them know what is going on. It also allows students to directly voice their concerns to senators, an opportunity that a lot of them have used to their benefit.
Do you have a platform? If so, what concrete steps will you take / proposal do you have to better the conditions for students?
My biggest goal for next year is to better improve the communication between Student Senate and the students. We have constantly improved and we continue to make improvements, but there is more that can be done to show the student body what Student Senate is doing. We currently ask all organizations to attend at least 2 Student Senate meetings to stay informed of what is happening across campus, but unfortunately that only provides these organizations with snapshots. I want to work with our secretary next year and publish updates monthly on the portal. This would allow students to follow along with Student Senate throughout the year.
Why should students back you? Do you think that you can effectively represent every person at the college and equally address their needs and concerns?
As someone who is very involved in a multitude of organizations, I think I would do a very good job of representing a very wide majority of the student body. I’m also extremely motivated and work till my goals are accomplished. This past year, I worked with a two other senators to set up busses to take students home to NYC and bring them back for short college breaks. This idea was something that other colleges have, and we wanted to bring this to York College. The project was based on listening to the voice of the students and turned out to be a great success. I promise to continue to work closely with the Student Body, so that Senate can listen to their suggestions and work to implement them.
One big thing about the role of President is that I won’t always be the one coming up with great ideas. My job will be to listen to Senators and students at large, to gather what they would like to see. The President’s role in Senate would be to foster those ideas and help make them a reality by reaching out to higher administration and other officials. Senators have done a tremendous job this year brainstorming great ideas that can make York College better, but without a capable President, those ideas would never have come to fruition.
Is there a, so called, “establishment” at York? Is it fair to call you an establishment candidate? If so, how effective is that establishment? If not, are you running against it?
I do not believe that there is an “establishment” at York College. In my three years, I have yet to see anything where the voice of students is not heard. Beginning with Dr. G-S and her open “office hours”, I have always felt that everyone at York College is here to benefit the students. Faculty and staff constantly go out of their way to help us in any possible way. That’s one of the biggest reasons I chose to come to York College, and one of the reason’s I love it here.
Plea for students’ support:
Student Senate is a very vital part of our campus culture and it needs a determined leader who will work relentlessly to ensure that student interests are being represented. As your Student Senate President, I vow to work closely with the next Executive Board to listen to each and every concern. I will also try my best to ensure that these concerns are addressed in a timely manner. A vote for Abhi Kudaravalli is a vote for a reliable, trustworthy, and committed leader. I will ensure accountability within Senate and show the student body how committed we are to making your time at York College the best it can be.
I hope to be your Student Senate President for the 2016-2017 academic year, and with your support we can achieve greatness! Thank you for your support and remember to vote online beginning April 5th right after debates. Elections will run until 5pm on April 8th.
Photo credit: Mike Adams.
Note: The Spartan’s Editor-in-Chief Steven Brikowski, who is a candidate for president of Student Senate, did not participate in formulating questions for candidates and did not edit candidate responses.