September 29, 2022

Student Union candidates form political party for first time in over a decade

On September 8, student union secretary Ashna Kelkar ’24 announced the candidates for the upcoming fall elections. Students will vote Sept. 14 for senators, associate justices and a representative from the stipend board.

For the first time in more than a decade, several candidates for Student Union office have organized themselves into a political party known as “New Frontiers”. Seven candidates are running under this banner, including two without opposition.

According to the party’s website, he supports “a cooperative government and a new leadership, hand in hand with the old but not subordinate.”

The last time a comparable bloc existed within the student union was in 2008-09. That year, a popular student-run blog called “Innermost Parts” endorsed several candidates who began referring to themselves as the “Progressive Party”. The Progressive Party finished the fall 2008 elections with a slight majority in the Senate, although short of the two-thirds majority required for passing resolutions at the time.

Even though the candidates had strong support from the Innermost Parts, the creation of the Progressive Party movement polarized opinions between those who supported the goals of the progressives and the students who preferred to remain non-aligned.

Despite this precedent for political parties, Union President Peyton Gillespie ’25 expressed concern over the creation of New Frontiers in a voicemail to justice on September 9. Although he said he was happy to see students participating in student government, Gillespie said he “doesn’t think the formation of political parties is necessary since we’re such a small campus.” He added: “It is better for the Union to work together, united and not divided into political parties”.

Union communications director Noah Risley ’24 said that while the political parties are within the bounds of the Student Union constitution, they still have similar concerns, which they have taken to court September 9. looks like a group of people who want to get elected together. Risley said the purpose of the Union is for representatives to create new ideas for the benefit of their constituents. “I would still be opposed to the idea,” Risley said, “but I would find it much less problematic if they were unified around certain policy goals rather than just operating as a social club.”

Risley said they were more upset to see nominees for the allotment board and the bench running in the party ticket because those are supposed to be non-political roles.

Here are the candidates for the fall 2022 election cycle. New Frontiers Party candidates are labeled NFP.

SENATORS

Class of 2024

Sahil Muthuswami is running unopposed for the post of senator from the class of 2024. In his candidate biography, Muthuswami said that he prioritizes community involvement, such as the Midnight Buffet. Muthuswami served as a senator for the 2021-22 academic year.

Class of 2025

James Brosgol is a candidate for the 2025 senator class. Brosgol, who was a senator the previous academic year, said in his candidate biography that he will “serve with an unwavering commitment to truth and integrity.”

Erica Hwang is a candidate for Senator for the Class of 2025. Hwang said in her candidate biography that if elected, she would work with period activists at ‘Deis to make menstrual products more widely available on campus.

Andrew Zeiler is a candidate for the 2025 Senatorial Class. In his candidate biography, Zeiler said his goals are to improve food quality, access to hygiene products, and to “work on the Brandeis commitment for the climate”.

Class of 2026

Stephen Gaughan (NFP) is a candidate for the promotion of 2026 senator. In his candidate biography, Gaughan said he was not running to add the Union to his CV, but because he “can do the job”.

Koby Gottlieb is running for Senator for the Class of 2026. If elected, Gottlieb plans to create a network to connect a student who feels unsafe when traveling on campus or Waltham with someone who will accompany him to his destination.

Tyler Hupart (NFP) is a candidate for the promotion of 2026 senator. In his biography, Hupart emphasized his belief that the diversity of the student body is the University’s greatest asset.

Bryan Jiang is a candidate for senator from the class of 2026. Jiang said in his biography that he plans to use his leadership experience to “[uplift] the voices of those in our brilliant class.

Fiona Wang is a candidate for senator in the class of 2026. Wang said she plans to create community-building events both within Brandeis and with surrounding universities.

Quadruple North

Eve Begelman ’26 is running for Senator for North Quad. In her biography, Begelman said she wanted to make North a “friendly and comfortable environment for everyone”.

Prateek Kanmadikar ’26 is running for Senator North Quad. Kanmadikar said in his biography that he plans to use his leadership experience to “address the challenges” Brandeis faces.

Liam Spilker ’26 (NFP) is running for Senator North Quad. In his candidate biography, Spilker did not list any experience or goals. Instead, he quoted the Rick Astley song “Never Gonna Give You Up”.

Skyline/Pink

Chana Thomas ’25 is running unopposed for the combined Skyline/Rosie Senate seat. Thomas said she wants to be a resource for students who have questions on campus.

ATV Massell

Summer Coronesi ’26 is running for Senator Massell Quad. Coronesi said in her biography that she looked forward to hearing students’ ideas.

Chloe Doonan ’26 is running for Senator Massell Quad. Doonan said in her bio that she would like to keep Massell’s bathrooms clean and the quad litter-free.

Joseph Heaney ’26 is running for Senator Massell Quad. In his biography, Heaney said he planned to bring better toilet paper to Massell.

Zachary Moskovits ’26 (NFP) is running for Senator Massell Quad. Moskovits said in his biography that he believes many first-year reps are unable to speak out due to older union members. “Unfortunately for the establishment, I don’t know how to shut up,” Moskovits said.

Ziv/Ridgewood

Eamonn Golden ’26 is running unopposed for the combined Ziv/Ridgewood Senate seat. Golden, who was Union Judiciary Chief Justice last year, said his goals for the quads were “threefold”, the first of which is to make menstrual products available in dormitories without shared bathrooms. .

Village/567

Kai Kibilko ’25 is running unopposed for the combined Village/567 South Street Senate seat. Kibilko said in his biography that he wanted to increase transparency and “democratize the process by which decisions about students are made.”

Charles River Apartments

Nicholas Kanan ’23 is the unopposed candidate for Senator for Charles River Apartments. Kanan was a senator for 567 and Village last semester and said in his biography that he wanted to improve communication of transportation outages to Charles River residents.

off-campus

Kelly Lei ’24 is running unopposed for Senator Off-Campus. Lei said she hopes to improve parking for off-campus students, clarify BranVan and shuttle routes, and create social media groups for students living near each other off-campus.

Myra Kraft Transition Year Program

Jahkhi Waters ’26 (NFP) is running unopposed for Senator MKTYP. Waters said in his biography that he is an “outspoken person” and wants to give back to the University by becoming a Union representative.

racial minority

Rachel Gao ’25 is running for racial minority senator. Gao said in her biography that she wanted to “create a more inclusive student body and community.” Additionally, Gao said she wants safe spaces to be accessible to various groups on campus.

Divam Gupta ’26 is running for racial minority senator. Gupta said in his biography that he wanted to serve as “a link between minority students and the Brandeis administration”.

ALLOWANCE COMMITTEE REPRESENTATIVE

Cameron Sherman ’26 (NFP) is running unopposed for the position of Allocations Board Representative. “I’m a big saver,” Sherman wrote in his nominee biography. “However, that doesn’t mean I don’t know when to have a good time.”

ASSOCIATE JUDGES

Farishta Ali ’24 is running for associated justice. Ali said in her biography that she hoped to uphold the student union constitution and “create a friendly environment within the Brandeis community.”

Alyssa Golden ’26 is running for Associate Justice. Golden said in her biography that she was “committed [herself] improvement and advocacy. Golden hopes to bring “accountability and transparency” to the student union.

Jenna Lewis ’26 is running for Associate Justice. Lewis said she would “hold individuals accountable for their pasts, but [does] don’t just aim to punish or judge what is “right”.

Zachary Miller ’25 is running for Associate Justice. In his biography, Miller stated that he believed his experiences in the mock trial and as an intern in civil court would help him do the job of an associate judge effectively.

Maxwell Weiner ’26 (NFP) is running for Associate Justice. Weiner said in his biography that if elected he would “consult [his] classmates to make important decisions.