Following a month of campaigning for presidential and
senatorial elections and months of discussion to discover the views of the
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point campus concerning the Green Fund and
Tobacco Referendum, the Student Government Association election process has
come to a close.
The team of current SGA executive members Ryan Specht
and David Boardman received the majority vote and will be taking office for the
upcoming academic year as president and vice president of SGA respectively.
“It’s a privilege for us to continue serving the
students and university, and we are honored to do so in our new roles as
president and vice president,” Specht said. “We want to actively represent all
students and student organizations, through continually gathering feedback.”
As of now the team is focusing on training for their
new roles in the organization and starting conversations with leaders across
campus asking what to work on over the next year. Working with the current SGA
leadership to ensure a smooth transition is the main concern for the rest of
“Much of our platform is the continuation of many
projects we have been working on and we are honored the student body is giving
us the opportunity to see these through,” Boardman said.
Such projects include work with the Green Fund, seeing
the completion of the Health and Wellness Study, institutionalizing support for
diversity and inclusivity, and the Tobacco Referendum.
With 73 percent of the vote, the Green Fund referendum
passed and $12 will be allocated from segregated fees towards that fund
according to the SGA Election Committee.
“The new structure and bylaws will go into effect next
semester. Between now and then the focus is on hiring our Environmental and
Sustainability Director, who will then start outreach and more education on the
new fund,” Specht said.
Currently no substantial projects can begin this
semester. The funding students voted to allocate will officially begin in the
fall of 2013. The new director position will oversee the allocation of funds
and SGA is looking for students who are interested in sustainability to fill
The total number of respondents for the Tobacco Policy
Preferential Referendum was 1118. Students were given four options for the
referendum and the result is based on the opinion of the student body. With
regard to tobacco policies on campus, the student body preferences are, in
order: tobacco free campus, smoke free campus, designated smoking areas on
campus, and maintain current policies.
“The referendum is considered the binding opinion of
the students, so SGA need not pass any further legislation through the Senate,”
Boardman said. “We are now waiting on the referendum that will go through
faculty and staff which will be happening in the coming weeks.”
Once the referendum goes through faculty and staff, the
results of both the student and faculty vote will be sent to Chancellor Bernie
Patterson, who will determine the final policy and timeline. His decision will
greatly be influenced by the recommendations of the student body and faculty
According to each team, the election experience for
both Specht and Boardman and their opponents Michael Howard and David Rawley
was beneficial both personally and professionally.
“It was great meeting so many new and interesting
people, providing me with a better understanding of this campus as a whole. I
feel a lot more connected with the school and its students,” Rawley said.
Rawley explained that he is unsure if he will run for
office again. Both Rawley and Howard wish Boardman and Specht the best as they
take office, leading UWSP into the future.
“One of the biggest things we enjoyed was going to the
student organizations and residence halls and hearing what the concerns of
these groups are. This is something we plan on making a part of SGA culture is
to do more outreach to represent the students,” Specht said. “The experience
was great and we are really excited to get to work.”
Students with questions concerning the results of the
election, Green Fund, or Tobacco Referendum can email SGA at firstname.lastname@example.org.