In the final debate before Tuesday’s student body president election, candidates spoke more candidly about their platforms and personalities.
All five candidates were in attendance for the debate, which was hosted on Sunday by The Daily Tar Heel, and questions centered on tuition and sexual assault policy.
Each candidate opposed a tuition hike but held different approaches to preventing it.
Candidate Will Lindsey believes advocacy should occur on many levels and is the key to stabilizing tuition increases.
A critical component of the tuition debate, candidate Hetali Lodaya said, is accessing multiple student perspectives.
“It’s not about a one-prong, one-person approach,” she said.
Candidate Kevin Claybren agreed that incorporating students into the discussion is an important step.
“Education first — then getting people active,” he said.
And while candidate Rob Jones acknowledged he can’t realistically set or promise a number goal, he said he still wants to keep the increases as low as possible.
Candidate Christy Lambden, however, argued that the nature of the tuition debate itself shouldn’t be limited to just hikes — it should center on all costs of college.
“We’ve got to look at the whole package of coming to Carolina,” he said. “I want a full-scale review of every fee on campus.
“I want to review and make sure all fees still work for students … If they aren’t, then we’ve got to set wheels in motion to change them.”
Each candidate also expressed support for changing the University’s sexual assault policy.
Jones said spreading awareness about sexual assault issues is important.
“First, we need to educate students on what it is,” he said. “Then we need to change the culture. There needs to be a zero-tolerance policy … We have to set the example and hold everyone accountable.”
All the candidates said campus resources — especially those students and faculty who are educated and passionate about the cause — should be utilized.
“We need to act as megaphones for their voices to be heard,” Lodaya said.
Claybren said student government’s role is to empower student voices.
“We come here together — we are all Tar Heels,” he said.
“If one person is having issues then we are all having issues. Our downfall will be if we don’t see how we are all intertwined and interconnected.”
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