Student Government Elections: Who’s Who?

Madelyn Ostendorf

The 2019 Student Government Election cycle has begun, and three slates are competing for the 2019-2020 Presidency.

Austin Graber

Austin Graber, a senior in business economics, is running with his Vice Presidential candidate Vishesh Bhatia, a junior in genetics.

Graber’s campaign is “Elevate, Educate, Connect”, and is focused on three major platforms.

“Elevate” is focused on continuing the work that current President Julian Neely and current Vice President Juan Bibiloni, looking specifically at areas of diversity, improving the Memorial Union and the elevation of Cyclone pride.

“Educate” is focused on educating the student body on topics such as mental health, sexual assault awareness and sustainability.

“Connect”, one of the main reasons that Graber and Bhatia are running, is focused on connecting with the student body and hearing a more diverse set of voices.

“We really feel that Student Government is doing a good job of representing Student Government, but its not doing a good job of reaching out to all different types of students and really getting that diverse set of ideals, rather than just hearing the same voices in the same room,” said Graber.

Graber currently serves on Student Government as an Ivy College of Business Senator, serves on the Finance Committee, serves as a Community Advisor in Birch-Welch-Roberts and has previously served as a Cyclone Aid.

Benjamin Whittington

Benjamin Whittington, a junior in political science, is campaigning with his Vice Presidential candidate Annaliessa Michelotti, a junior in women’s and gender studies.

Whittington’s campaign is focused on “Bridging the Divide” between students of different backgrounds—political, racial or social— and bringing Cyclones together.

The campaign is also focused transparency, bringing more outreach and interaction from Student Government to students, and raising awareness for what it is that Student Government actually does.

Some of Whittington’s ideas to increase the knowledge of Student Government is not only encouraging current Student Government members to share their experiences, but rewarding students in some way for their interest and initiative in learning about Student Government.

“I personally believe in civic engagement and having people come to the conversation to talk about differences, because if we can’t get together and talk about things, then we can’t get anything done,” said Whittington.

Whittington currently serves on the Civic Engagement Committee in Student Government, is the Vice-Chair of the Residency Committee and is the Vice President of Politics at ISU.

Cody Woodruff

Cody Woodruff, a senior in political science, is running with his Vice Presidential candidate Analese Hauber, a senior in English.

Woodruff’s campaign, “I Stand for U”, focuses on understanding identities, unifying community, unlimited opportunities and unconditional support.

“Understanding identities” aims to incorporate the voices of all students into student government, and continue to make Student Government look more like the student body.

“Unifying community” focuses on celebrating the unique identities that Iowa State has, as well as emphasising the sentiment of community.

“Unlimited opportunities” focuses on helping students to find opportunities to get involved on campus and across the Ames community. As part of his platform, Woodruff is looking to work with the university raising the minimum wage for students with on-campus jobs as well as

“The university can take this next step and say ‘Yes, we have to raise tuition, but that doesn’t mean it has to be even more unaffordable,’” said Woodruff. “Students across campus, depending on the job, get $8.50, $7.50, maybe even the $7.25. But if we could bring that to a flat ten, which I think is really reasonable, it would do a ton to support students financially.”

“Unconditional support” focuses on student safety, health and overall wellness. The platform puts emphasis on mental health, the lease gap, increased lighting, increased emergency lights on campus, sexual assault and the expansion of SafeRide.

Woodruff currently serves as the Speaker of the Senate, is a United Residents Off-Campus senator, and has previously served two years as an Inter-Residence Hall Association senator.