ASEWU candidates greet students at barbecue


Illustration by Joseph Weeden

Students gather at barbecue event to meet candidates.

By Katie Dunn, Staff Writer

Music, sunshine and food were the backdrop for the April 20 barbecue outside of Snyamncut Hall, part of a meet and greet for contenders of the 2015-16 academic year ASEWU positions.

In no particular order, this article covers several of the candidates who made their presence known to potential voters at the barbeque.

Bryce Perez, a junior majoring in math education, said he is running for the ASEWU president position because he loves Eastern.

“We’re all a big family here,” said Perez.

Perez said his goal, if elected, would be getting more students to engage in campus activities and getting them working together more often. He said one of the ways he would accomplish this goal is by helping students become more aware of all the resources Eastern has to offer.

“You see campus become most alive when students are involved,” said Perez.

Senior Canton Leach is another contender for the ASEWU president position. He wants to have a career in forensics and is in the process of changing his major from computer science to criminal justice.

“My biggest goal for the position is giving back to the students,” said Leach.

Because the vote for the PUB remodel passed, Leach said students deserve to have some excitement. His solution for this includes an increase in Eagle Entertainment events and the number of famous guests brought to campus.

Having a greater student government presence is another of Leach’s goals. He said he does not want ASEWU to only sponsor events. If it is possible, he said he would like to attend them.

Current ASEWU student athletic affairs representative Kyle Dodson was at the barbecue campaigning for the president’s seat. He is a senior business major and has been the athletic affairs representative for the last two years.

“I’ve learned a lot from ASEWU and I want to pass on the knowledge,” said Dodson.

One of Dodson’s goals is increasing EWU graduation rates by working with Academic Affairs and counseling and seeing where students are struggling the most.

He said graduation rates for bachelor degrees are not as high as they could be and that seven years is the average time it takes for students to get a degree.

Different backgrounds can account for these numbers but “no student signs up for a seven-year plan,” said Dodson.

Dezirae Brown, sophomore psychology major, said she is running for president because she is always stepping forward and taking charge.

“I feel like I’m the one who can make a difference in the school,” said Brown.

Establishing bonds between students and the student-body government is one of Brown’s goals. She said she would like to have more diversity in events around campus and to have more events involving campus organizations.

“I’ve always loved to help people,” said Brown.

Brown said she has been a part of several volunteer groups and would like to see more students involved in similar activities.

Current ASEWU vice president Brendan Hargrave, who mingled at the barbecue, is trying to get re-elected for next year.

Hargrave is a junior majoring in finance and has been on part of the ASEWU team since his freshmen year.

Sophomore Bryce Paulsen is running for legislative affairs representative.

“I just want to get more involved on campus,” said Paulsen.

One goal Paulsen said he had was to make a stronger connection between the students and the student government by increasing awareness through social media.

Elizabeth Shimamoto, freshmen and a business and marketing major, is running for student activities representative.

“I am really involved on campus and I want everyone else to get involved,” said Shimamoto.

To prepare for this position, Shimamoto has job shadowed the current ASEWU activities representative.

Shimamoto said she would like to help students find organizations and clubs that suit them by creating a survey or by having calendars available with the times clubs and organizations meet, so students can find one that fits into their schedule.

Running for student health and safety services is Katie Sweeney, a junior operations management major.

One of Sweeney’s main goals is to encourage the university and students be more involved with the community through coalitions like Let’s Move, Cheney, a city-sponsored effort to improve the community’s health.

Sweeney is currently on the Student Health Advisory board and said she has always been interested in health and safety.

Chase LaCombe is aiming for technology advancement representative in the next ASEWU election.

LaCombe said he is a junior biology major and has worked two years as an aerospace engineer.

A goal of LaCombe’s is to change out some of the outdated technology on campus.

“I’ve heard a lot of complaints about slow internet,” said LaCombe.

Carlos Hernandez, junior education major, said he is running for ASEWU legislative affairs.

Hernandez said teaching is in his family, his mom’s a teacher, so he would like to help educate the students.

“I want to make Eastern a better place to get an education,” said Hernandez.

Getting more students to vote is one of Hernandez’s goals. He wants to promote voting on campus, around the dorms and possibly at apartments in Cheney because it is not just freshmen who vote less.

“I’m passionate about this,” said Hernandez.

General elections are May 5. Students can either pass on the chance to elect individuals who will help make a difference on campus, or they can vote.