After being involved with various groups around campus, including College Republicans at CSU, Ag Ambassadors, Presidential Ambassadors, working for Resources for Disabled Students and holding the position as Deputy Chief of Staff within the Associated Students of Colorado State University, Ashley Higgins and her running mate, Steven Losolla said they have made many connections that will allow them to best serve students, faculty and staff on campus.
With a platform slogan of “Representing those whom we serve,” Higgins and Losolla said their three-pillar campaign focusing on outreach, diversity and sustainability will help to continue the progress ASCSU has made this year, as well as start the work that still needs to be done when it comes to advocating for students on campus.
“We feel that representing students, especially in the positions that we are in now, has been something that we are very passionate about,” Higgins said. “Being able to go out and talk to students, advocate on their behalf, and give them the most possibilities and opportunities possible is something that is very important to us.”
The two hope to continue the work ASCSU has done with U+2, open a dialogue with the Women and Gender Advocacy Center and focus on making sure students know how their student fees are being used.
Presidential Candidate: Ashley Higgins
As someone who is involved on CSU’s campus, Higgins has based her campaign on serving students and making sure their voices are being heard on campus.
“Our main focus is about representation of students,” Higgins said. “But it’s also about being that selfless leader and being able to have a servant heart and a servant attitude when it comes to leadership, and being able to put the needs of others in front of our own to really make sure that students are being represented.”
As part of her additional work on campus, Higgins works in the office of Resources for Disabled students under Assistant Director Allison Penfield, who commented on her personality and ability to manage her busy schedule, while putting students first.
“She has a warm, vibrant personality and always helps visitors to our office feel welcome,” Penfiend wrote. “Ashley is open-minded and truly cares about others around her. She has many responsibilities and obligations outside this job, but is able to manage them well.”
Higgins talked about the three different sections of her campaign which include outreach, diversity and sustainability.
“We want to be able to be representative of students; that involves administration, that involves faculty, that involves the community, as well as students at the very forefront,” she said of the outreach section of her platform.
Higgins said the section of her campaign concerning diversity will have two main focal points: diversity that is internal to ASCSU and diversity that’s external to ASCSU.
“This semester seems to bring that to light a lot,” Higgins said. “We want to be able to continue those types of conversations and make sure that ASCSU is being as representative as possible, and we think that making sure the piece of diversity inclusion is at the forefront inside ASCSU and to make sure that also shows externally.”
Higgins hopes to uphold the university’s practices in sustainability by continuing to encourage alternative transportation, but also said she would like to partner more with the community on certain programs like earth week ans waste audits.
“We want to make sure that we reach university, community and self-sustainability,” Higgins said.
Higgins added that she would like to see more of a focus on being transparent with where student fees are being allocated.
“A lot of comments that we’ve gotten are that students don’t know where their student fees are going, or why they have to pay so much,” Higgins said. “it’s something we’d really like to address and hopefully create more transparency about.”
Vice Presidential Candidate: Steven Losolla
Losolla talked about the progress that ASCSU has made this past year, as well as the work that still needs to be done to create a better campus.
“Being in ASCSU, you just see that there’s a lot of things that could be done, and it just takes that person having the initiative to take up that mantle and continue some of these things that have been going on around campus,” Losolla said.
Losolla said he would like to see more transparency withing ASCSU to let students know about what ASCSU really does. involvement within the campus community, and be an advocate for students.
“I think that trying to be more visible and transparent is something that we can really strive toward this year,” Losolla said.
Losolla talked on self-sustainability as being making sure students are aware of mental health resources on campus as well as other resources that are available to them.
“I think a lot of people lose focus about the reason why we come to school,” he said. “I think students need to focus on the fact that yes, they are students, but they are also people, and that this is a developmental period in a lot of people’s lives. You grow up a lot in four years; it’s a very compressed time and there’s so much that happens in four years.”
Losolla also talked about diversity in relation to ASCSU and the bill that just passed, as well as what that means for Senate in the coming years.
“Passing the diversity bill was really huge, and I think that’s something that next year, is going to be something that’s going to be really powerful,” Losolla said. “It’s going to be something we’re going to have to really work on and having somebody in the space who understands diversity is going to be really important. I think it’s going to be a good year for growth and it’s going to be a good year to lay that groundwork and really get senate back to its original intended form of representing all the student population.”
Losolla also talked on the progress ASCSU made concerning the U+2 law in Fort Collins, which impacts many students.
“One of the big things we did this year was U+2, and changing U+2,” Losolla said. “I think we can really build off of this year and move into next year, and really try to make that a community impact; it’s a feasible thing; it’s something that’s going to take a lot more work, but we’re willing to do it.”
Voting for ASCSU president and vice president will take place on April 4, 5, and 6, 2016 on Ramweb.
Collegian Reporter Megan Fischer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @MegFischer04.