SG hopefuls sit down with Spinnaker

Spinnaker

Sitou Gilles Byll-Cataria, president of the International Student Association, and Giovannie Medina, a public relations junior, have announced their candidacy for student body president and vice president on the Yellow Party ticket. The Spinnaker sat down with them for a question and answer session.

Spinnaker: Why are you running?

Byll-Cataria: “When I got here, for the first two years I really didn’t want to do anything. I was just going to school, and the third year I felt like it was time for me to actually make a change because I saw a lot during those two years and I felt nothing was changing. I was complaining and nothing was changing, and I decided maybe it was time for me to actually step up and maybe try to get this change that I want to see.”

Medina: “I think that this [running for student body vice president] will be a great opportunity. I want to learn more about Student Government. I feel for the three years I’ve been at UNF, two of them were spent just like Sitou, in the dark. It’s going to be hard because I don’t know enough, I really don’t, but I’m here because I want to serve the students, that’s what I want to do.”

S: How will you combat student apathy?

B: “It’s great to try to tackle student [apathy] but [when] you don’t tell them when something is happening how do you expect students to come? If you hold a town hall meeting on housing but you don’t advertise it, how do expect students to show up? You need advertising. That’s communication. We need to change the way we talk to the student.”

S: What’s your platform?

B: “We’re going to focus on one big thing, and that’s education. The reason you come to UNF is to get an education, right? … So let’s improve education at UNF. How about advising? We need to change advising, we need to work on it and make it better. … We want to work with the administration and say, ‘This is not going right, we want to fix it. Let’s see what we can change, let’s see how we can change it, and let’s work together.’”

S: What would you do to improve parking on campus?

B: “We can’t build more parking spots in a year, that’s not going to happen, nobody’s going to promise that to you. But think about it: Why do you have to spend 45 minutes in the parking garage looking for parking? How about we take a look at the airport and realize, wait a minute, at the airport they have a screen in front of the garage that tells you how many spots are available. How about UNF gets something like this?”

S: Do you feel you have enough experience and are prepared to run SG, should you be elected?file:///private/var/folders/Ag/Agko3hsHHGm95yE6M99Qjn9AB-M/Cleanup%20At%20Startup/InDesign%20Snippets/Snippet_3018BCC78.idms

M: “I would simply say that ignorance is bliss. I know that I do not have the experience as the other candidates, I know that I am no where near as knowledgeable as the other candidates, so I do have to learn in order to have any success.”

B: “If one day I come to you and tell you I’m ready, then please don’t believe me because that will not be true. That will never be true because there is only one person who can tell you what it is to be president of the student body and that person is in power right now. You never know what you put yourself into until you actually start. My point is, I will learn as much as I can. I will learn the [SG] Constitution, I have already started, and I will learn every single day. I will have to learn every single day, and I will not be ready on the first day.”

S: What party are you running under?

M: “Yellow for us is a color that facilitates communication. We want people to understand that our primary mission is to communicate with the students. This [SG communicating with students] has been unsuccessful in the past. We want to change that. That’s why we’re here. That’s our purpose, and that’s our mission.”