South Dakota State University students elected Alex Halbach and Kat Brandtjen as their next Student s’Association President and vice president, March 1 and 2.
Halbach and Brandtjen celebrated a landslide victory over Brad Blaha and Katie Jo McGuire, obtaining 63 percent of the votes. Halbach and Brandtjen received 1,469 votes and Blaha McGuire received 865 votes.
“We’re excited for the campaign to be over,” said Halbach.
“It was a lot of hard work,” said Brandtjen, “but we expected that.”
One of the things Halbach and Brandtjen hope to achieve, in addition to the goals established during the election, is to become more available and visible to students. They hope to attend more student organization meetings and work hard to inform students of the Students’ Association and their services. They will also continue to work hard on the safe ride and recycling programs, which were started by the current administration, Ryan Brunner and Tim Wrenn.
“Both programs are very important additions to this campus and we will do everything in our power to help them succeed,” said Brandtjen.
Halbach and Brandtjen appreciate all the support they received from students and faculty throughout their campaign.
“We couldn’t have done it without them?a big thanks to everyone who showed their support by wearing t-shirts, hanging posters, sidewalk chalking and everything else,” said Halbach.
A special thank-you goes out to Caitlin Monahan and Sara Venhuizen. Monahan and Venhuizen helped organize and inform students of the campaign activities and how they could help Halbach and Brandtjen on the campaign trail.
Halbach and Brandtjen also thank their opponents. Brandtjen said she was grateful to have a chance to work with Blaha and McGuire-they were fun opponents.
Brunner said, “the overall election went well for both sides.” “They spoke to many campus groups in order to gain positive feedback which allowed them to understand what the students of SDSU wanted.”
“They are well qualified for the position,” he said. He expects a smooth transition for Halbach and Brandtjen.
“They will create and continue projects which will help make SDSU known on a national level,” said Brunner.
Halbach and Brandtjen will take over for Brunner and Wrenn on March 20. Their first responsibility is to elect senators-at-large, filling the remaining Senate seats that were not filled during the regular election. They hope to begin working right away on student/faculty advising.
“This is a major concern for both Kat and I, and it needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.” said Halbach.
“Students and faculty need to stay current with classes and major requirements to ensure unnecessary classes are not taken, and we want to work more closely with faculty to ensure this free-flow of information.”
Halbach and Brandtjen will work to create more accessible off-campus housing and provide a greater amount of technologically advanced classrooms and labs.
“Alex and I will work hard to make the transition to president and vice president and will continue the strong leadership of Brunner and Wrenn,” said Brandtjen.
“Brunner and Wrenn have built a great momentum of student leadership at SDSU and we plan to continue that momentum into the future.”