The Student Government Association election results were released early Wednesday morning, and all of the candidates are focused on the future of the Student Government Association.
Student Body Treasurer and newly elected Student Body President Cody Westphal, who received 1,564 votes , said he is exhilarated about the election results.
He said he is proud of everyone’s campaigning this year, and he knows Graham McMillan, his opponent who lost by 336 votes, will continue to help the student body next year even though he was not elected.
“I think both Graham and I ran really clean campaigns,” he said. “And we remained friends.”
Westphal said he’s not excited for himself, but for the chance to work with the student body to accomplish goals.
“I’m excited because of the opportunity and the blessing I’ve been given to make an impact,” he said. “We’re all working together to get it done.”
Westphal said the cabinet needs to work together to get things done before school starts next semester.
“We have to set up a structure capable of carrying out the plans that we have,” he said.
Westphal’s main goals include revamping organizational representation, making changes to the finance guidelines and implementing the inclusiveness and representation campaign.
“When school starts we will have a system for House to build a relationship with organizations,” he said. “The question is: How do we make marginalized groups feel represented, what can we do for them?”
McMillan, current vice president for external affairs who also ran for student body president, said he looks forward to seeing what Westphal has planned.
“I prayed a lot about this before, that the Lord’s will be done and I believe that is the case,” he said.
McMillan said he plans to continue to serve the student body through Exodus, a first-year religious retreat.
“I’m just trying to keep my head up and I’m looking forward to what’s next,” he said.
Current Vice President for Operations Lauren Sharp was re-elected, receiving 1,976 votes. Her opponent, Student Experience committee chairman Nick Daigle, received 757 votes.
Sharp said she feels great that her and her campaign team’s hard work has paid off.
She said it’s important that everyone puts the election behind them and moves forward as a joint cabinet, and that the cabinet needs to discuss the vision of SGA together to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Sharp said she will continue to work on three initiatives: expanding the testing materials initiative, getting the SGA projects database implemented, and introducing legislation to fund printers in the first year residence halls.
Nick Daigle, who ran against Sharp for Vice President for Operations, wrote in a text message that he thought he ran a great campaign.
“I had a lot of close supporters and a lot of people who believed in me,” he wrote.
He also wrote that he was planning on staying involved on campus.
Newly elected Treasurer Zach Madel, who ran unopposed, wrote in a text message that he was pleased with the results and was looking forward to working with the newly elected cabinet.
“I couldn’t be happier for Cody, Lauren and Hillary,” he wrote.
Madel wrote his first plan as Treasurer would be to focus on getting the Activities Funding Board, where SGA allocates money to student organizations, ready for the beginning of next academic year.
Newly elected Vice President for External Affairs Hillary Shepheard, who ran unopposed, said in a post on her personal Facebook page that she is excited to start working with fellow newly elected student body officers Sharp, Westphal, and Madel.
Ryann Harris, Katherine Love and Jordan Rubio contributed to this report.