ASI Open Forum

Adrianna Adame, Assistant News Editor

ASI candidates gathered for the ASI Open Forum to introduce themselves to students and to present their plans for what they intend to do if they get elected the position that they are running for.


The ASI Open Forum was held on Thursday, March 21 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. in Arts 240 by the ASI Board of Directors. In this forum, students were able to hear from ASI candidates about why they were qualified for the positions they were running for and find out more about the candidates. Before the forum began, students were able to fill out and turn in questions on flashcards that would be answered towards the end. Due to the limited amount of time for the forum, questions were not able to be answered by the audience during the event.


According to the ASI page on the CSUSM website, there are twenty-four candidates running for ASI positions for the 2019/2020 school year.


Samantha Caracciolo, a women’s studies major and political science minor; Kenneth Tran, a business marketing major (helped on the orientation team as well as ASI) and Steven Alvarado are the three candidates running for ASI President.


Caracciolo said that “a huge vision that I have is making sure that the ASI Board of Directors holds the university accountable to the students, and making sure that each project that we have in ASI is directly for the students.” When asked how to get students more involved on campus, Caracciolo said that “School spirit comes directly from transparency, students get involved when they know what is going on around them. When the university stands for them, it will directly impact how much they love their university experience.”


Tran, a member of the orientation team as well as ASI member, said that “I was in ASI since my first semester, as a volunteer, I worked on campus community board for two years and just being in different parts of ASI has really allowed me to connect with students and also have a really good relationship with faculty and staff. So, I really want to be the bridge between students and faculty.” He said that one of his goals as ASI President would be “to teach students how to be financially literate in taxes.” Tran also mentioned that he would like to help establish traditions on campus to help bring students together.


When it came to a question about how to improve school spirit on campus, Steven Alvarado said “I want to encourage school spirit through myself, and I want to use myself as an example, and ask my friends to spread school spirit on campus and then expand on… these events to promote school spirit too.”


Lucas Dias; Estrella Ordonez a double major in business and criminology and Mariana Rosales, a human resource management major and minor in French are the three candidates running for Executive Vice President.


Faith Garcia, a global studies major minoring in women’s studies and Michelle Tran, a global studies major in her third year of ASI, is currently serving as Vice President of Student and University Affairs, are running for Vice President of Student and University Affairs.


Estefania Fraticelli, an environmental studies major and minor in ethnic studies and Jaelyn Freeman, a sociology major and communications minor, are running for Chair and Chief of Staff.


Timothy Pelayo is running for College of Business Administration (CoBA) Representative. Pelayo said that of he was elected CoBA Representative, that he “would definitely advocate for parking, minimizing the cost and ask in a student survey as well.”


Keith Lin, a kinesiology major b and Genessis Quezada are running for College of Education, Health & Human Services (CEHHS) Representative.


Devon Kimbrough, a communications major and literature and writing studies minor; Joshua Martinez, a political science major; Eduardo Negron, a political science major and ethnic studies minor; Rylee Spencer; Shovan Vatandoust and Inique Wilson, a communications major, are running for College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral & Social Sciences (CHABSS) Representative.


Negron said that he had felt that there were actually a lot of problems on campus, mentioning that  while nearly 50 percent of the students at CSUSM fall under CHABSS, many students in this college “may have had your classes cut…I’m going to make sure that I work in the Academic senate, so that your classes don’t get cut, which is one of my main priorities.”


Gabby Garcia, a communication major and women’s studies minor; Karla Pizano, a double major in sociology and criminology with a minor in Spanish and Luis Ramirez, a Spanish major, are running for Student at Large Representative for Diversity & Inclusion.


Garcia said “that diversity is a key component in my life. It is something that I see every day and something that we need to deal [with] more on this campus.” She also talked about the importance of the various communities on campus working more so that overall, the campus would feel more inclusive.


Megan Hammerschmidt, an environmental studies major and Eliese Holt, a double major in global studies and women’s studies, and minoring in dance, are running for Student at Large Representative for Sustainability.


After the forum ended, candidates from GROWTH, a group that is focused on promoting the campaigns of many of those running in the ASI Elections, were available to talk to students for ten minutes outside of ART 240 to address any further questions.


The ASI Elections begin online on Monday, March 25 at 7 a.m. to Wednesday, March 27 at 5 p.m.