ASCSU candidates Daniels, Olson seek diversity and new perspectives

There are many things that Nigel Daniels is passionate about. He loves acting, spending time outdoors and dancing. Yet, there is one key thing that drives his desire to be the next president of the Associated Students of CSU: the passion for diversity and social justice.

“I think my interest first started with my brother. He has a lot of mental challenges and disabilities, so my mom had a relationship with law and the court system early on in my life,” Daniels said. ”I think seeing the fight she put forth to make sure Nate was represented and had a voice made me more passionate about that type of thing and has driven me to pursue a career in it.”

ASCSU Presidential candidate Nigel Daniels, left, and ASCSU Vice Presidential candidate Andrew Olson.
ASCSU Presidential candidate Nigel Daniels, left, and ASCSU Vice Presidential candidate Andrew Olson.

His interest in social justice was furthered by trips to Kenya, where Daniels taught elementary school children and built a garden for the local Samburu village.

“Samburu is very dry. Because of that, there wasn’t a lot of hope for a garden in their community. They didn’t believe it would work or be something that could be long-term,” Daniels said. “But we found a way to make it work. We were able to bring together different people to see that there is a different way to survive and be sustainable.”

Daniels hopes these experiences will help him bring greater diversity to ASCSU.

“I’m very passionate about representation and having diversity in life or exposure to diversity, exposure to people who live a different life,” Daniels said. “I think every student deserves some exposure to greater diversity and can greatly benefit from it … I’m a firm believer that your experiences are what build and make you.”

Daniels’ running mate, Andrew Olson, also believes that different opinions are what will make a better ASCSU next year.

“I just like working with people,” Olson said. “I love group projects and getting all the opinions and input. I am big on finding a solution to problems and making sure that the solution is reflective of everyone’s opinion.”

The duo has three main pillars of focus for their campaign: Community, student services and university enhancement — each with three campaign promises beneath them. The initiative that both Daniels and Olson are most excited about is their proposal to make an end-of-the-semester event to bring students together.

“This would allow us to unite as Rams at the end of each semester and promote the CSU tradition, and celebrate a year (of) our hard work,” Daniels said. “It would be a tradition that would be long-lived, and students would be able to have a voice in it all.”

Voting for the ASCSU elections will begin on RAMWeb April 8 and end April 10.

ASCSU Beat Reporter Carrie Mobley can be reached at news@collegian.com.