SGA fills three empty seats after election

By Annie Dang, Staff Writer

The Student Government Association announced the winners of its election on Friday, with returning senator Angela De Souza claiming the At-Large senate seat, and Martin Pham and Austin Schwartz claiming the two freshmen senator seats.  

Polls opened Sept 13 and voting was completed by Friday afternoon.  

Originally the vote for the freshman seat had Pham with 43.2 percent of the vote and a tie between between Schwartz and Evelyn Nguyen, each with 18.9 percent of the vote. Nguyen withdrew her candidacy after the election.

"I went to the first meeting and I just realized it wasn’t something I was interested in so I wanted to give the seat to someone who would be more involved," Nguyen said.  

According to SGA President Marisa Zayat, SGA only reserved one spot for a freshman senator a couple years ago. Since last year, however, a bill was passed to officially add a second seat for freshmen.

“This way, the two freshmen can talk amongst themselves and represent their class well," she said.

Pham said he hopes his class will feel involved in the decision making process at Newman through SGA.

"I really hope people will know that their ideas and voice are really valued and that people will really speak out to make Newman University as well as our communities the place they want it to be," Pham said.

The At-Large seat was left vacant when non-traditional student representative, Michael Reed, resigned in August.

De Souza said she did not originally intend to be a part of SGA this year and did not run in the spring.  

"I decided not to run last year because I wanted to focus my time on successfully completing the nursing program. Then, at the Involvement Fair, Marisa told me there was a senate seat open on a day and time I was available so I filled out an application and let God take it from there," she said.

In the At-Large election, 129 people voted, with 37 people voting in the freshmen election.

PHOTO: SGA TYPICALLY HOLDS elections in the fall for the freshmen seats and elections in the spring for all other seats. Courtesy photo, Newman Advancement