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Meet the six student body president candidates for 2017-18

A meeting was held in Carroll Hall on Monday for students to announce their intent to run for Student Body President.

A meeting was held in Carroll Hall on Monday for students to announce their intent to run for Student Body President.

Candidates will only appear on the ballot if they can gather 1,250 student signatures between today and Feb. 7. The election will be Feb. 14

Adkins, a junior political science and journalism major, said she hopes to improve UNC by focusing on mental health awareness and reform, sexual assault reform and inclusion and diversity.

She said she decided to run despite the barriers to leadership roles women face.

“I’m a first-generation college student and I’m an Asian-American woman and, you know, I was worried that people wouldn’t be able to look past that and they wouldn’t be able to see past my identity because, you know, a minority woman is not the typical vision of leadership in America,” Adkins said.

Broadhurst, a junior geological sciences and physics major, said he decided to run for student body president because students worry how their lives at UNC will be impacted by what is going on in the world and on campus.

Broadhurst said another part of his platform is to increase student feedback. One way he is doing this is by providing a place on his website for students to comment on his platform.

“That way it is not my platform or my team’s platform, but a student body platform that dictates the actions of their student government,” he said.

Espada, a junior political science and women and gender studies major who has never served on student government, said she decided to run in November to make UNC and student government more inclusive to everyone. Espada said she feels marginalized on campus as a Latina.

She said if elected student body president, she will address issues facing Latino/a students by creating a taskforce for issues affecting undocumented students.

“I want minorities on campus to feel at home,” she said. “I want student government to be accessible for the average student.”

Grier, a junior music and political science major, said he’s running his campaign for student body president on a campaign of love. Grier said his platform is complex in order to address the many needs of students and student groups at UNC.

“I’ve really done my research in regards to making sure that I’ve communicated with many groups across campus and seeking what their needs are versus what I believe and say that their needs are,” Grier said. “I’m hoping to be a representative of the people and not my own interests.”

McKnight, a junior public policy and history major, said he hopes to make student government more accessible and transparent to students by implementing ideas like streaming the first 15 minutes of cabinet meetings and renovating student government’s website.

McKnight said the student code and constitution are outdated, and he wants to focus on policy changes on issues like sexual assault awareness and mental health accessibility first.

Nail, a sophomore economics and political science major, is running on a platform based on accessibility, wellness and civil engagement.

Nail said if he’s elected, he will make it clear that student government is responsible to the students, even if that contradicts what administration wants to do.

“There’s nothing wrong with fighting against bad policy — you should fight against bad policy, but wouldn’t it be great if students actually had an effective way of kind of undermining that system that’s perpetuating systemic inequalities and instead actually have their voices heard at the beginning of the process when the policy is actually being made,” Nail said.

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