3 candidates vie for student trustee

By Gus Bode

Two-year student trustee incumbent Ed Ford is stepping out of the race for the position this year, making way for a change at perhaps the most influential student seat on campus.

The position, which comes with a vote on issues such as tuition raises, will be fought over by the current USG president, a second-year law student and a USG senator.

The student trustee job consists of meeting with the Board of Trustees monthly as a voting member and essentially is the only student with which the BOT speaks, said Rick Maurer, current student trustee for SIU-Edwardsville.

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“The trustee can have a major impact on University decisions and policies,” Maurer said.

The position is also important, Maurer said, because in July, Gov. Rod Blagojevich handpicks the student trustee from the SIU campus for a voting position on the board. The other trustee is a backup for the voting trustee, Maurer said.

The candidates for this year’s election are Lance Trover, a second-year law student from Vienna. Trover graduated from SIUC with a bachelor’s degree in radio-television and a minor in political science.

Tequia Hicks, the current USG president, is the second candidate. Hicks, is a junior from Carbondale studying political science, has said she grew impatient with the senate last fall, when senators did not attend meetings and could not pass resolutions that were crucial to changing USG’s constitution.

The third candidate is Whitney Shalda, a sophomore from Chicago studying political science. As a new senator to USG in January, Shalda has not written any resolutions.

Marinus Van Kuilenburg, student trustee election commissioner, said the upcoming election should be interesting because three candidates are running this year as opposed to last year when only two candidates ran.

“It’s important for students to have a voice, especially because it’s an advisory voice for the Board of Trustees,” Kuilenburg said.

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Tyler Myers, USG election commissioner, said the USG and student trustee elections are operating separately this year, but he will oversee both of the elections because all the candidates will be on the same ballot.

The candidates for student trustee follow rules close to the USG presidential candidates with minor changes, Kuilenburg said.

According to the Student Trustee Election Laws, candidates are only allowed to spend $250 for their campaign, unlike the USG presidential candidates who can spend up to $400. Student Trustee candidates are to follow the same rules as USG candidates when it comes to poster hangings, Kuilenburg said.

This rule includes carrying a permit when campaigning, and University Housing must approve advertisements before they are hung in any building on campus.

Reporter Matthew McConkey can be reached at [email protected]

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