The Corsair Sponsors Third Annual A.S. Candidates' Forum

Approximately 100 students and Santa Monica College staff members gathered on the college’s quad this Tuesday, April 3 on the main campus to listen to what candidates running for SMC's student government, the Associated Students (A.S.) Board of Directors, had to say. 

The debate commenced at 11:15 a.m. with Edward Lee, The Corsair’s editor-in-chief and debate moderator, welcoming the growing crowd. Organized by each of A.S. positions being ran for, students from three political groups, known as slates, and those running independently each had time to tell the audience how they foresee the student government being ran if elected. Cheers and claps arose from the crowd as each candidate walked up to the podium and microphone to give their speech.

A consistent theme among the candidates running for A.S. president was the empowerment of students. “Implementing checks and balances and empowering the students to be more active within their community is something that needs to be done,” said president candidate Beau Espeso of the For The Students slate.

A few minutes after noon, candidates for multiple positionswere asked some questions among the twelve that was chosen by the current A.S. board, the Corsair's social media, and the audience. During the time students gave their questions to Corsair staff members, SMC student Melissa Cortez addressed the power she's experienced the A.S. board members having. “[A.S. Board members] actually do have a bit of a say on the things that get implemented and also the type of ambiance that’s created around the campus."

After the final round of the question and answer portion of the debate, Lee thanked the crowd for attending the event, with current A.S. President Jennifer Chen concluding the event by reminding students to vote for the A.S. election through stations outside the library and inside the cafeteria, or online through the home page after logging into Corsair Connect. According to the Associated Students page on SMC’s website, students can vote through Thursday, April 5 at 11:59 p.m.

Following the A.S. candidate debate, A.S. advisor Dr. Nancy Grass addressed the bigger crowd in this debate in comparison to last year's: “Although we have a lower headcount of students, there seems to be a lot of interest on what’s going on in AS, which is exciting.” 

The results of the election will be announced at the election committee meeting this Friday, April 6 at 9 a.m. in the Cayton Center located on SMC’s main campus, barring any legitimate claims of serious violations the day before.