L.E.A.D. presidential candidates make students priority
Team proposes restructuring of senate meetings, new office to make ASUCD more accessible to students

Published March 9th 2005 in California Aggie
While ASUCD has received its fair share of publicity in the past year, Leadership, Empowerment, Activism and Determination presidential candidates Caliph Assagai and Darnell Holloway said many students feel detached from their student leaders and the organization as a whole.

In an attempt to bridge the gap between students and ASUCD, Assagai and Holloway have ideas to make the organization more accessible to students on a couple of levels.

"The biggest complaint I've heard in the past year or so is that there is no outreach from ASUCD to the student population," Assagai said.

One of their main concerns is with the current organization of the weekly senate meetings. Holloway said these meetings are unfriendly to students wishing to voice their concerns, and he would like to move the public comment period to the beginning of the agenda for the meetings.

"A lot of times students leave because they don't understand how the meetings work and get tired of waiting around to speak," Holloway said. "We would structure the agenda so we could hear student concerns first."

Holloway also said he and Assagai want to make the meetings more organized by planning ahead of time with potential speakers.

One of the candidates' other main priorities, if they are elected to office, will be to create a campus outreach and organizing office to increase collaboration among student organizations and ASUCD.

"The students we've talked to feel really disconnected from ASUCD," said Holloway. "They only feel like they see [senators] around during election time when they are out campaigning. This office would be a permanent body as a form of ASUCD outreaching to the rest of the student body."

The campus outreach and organization office would have several purposes. Assagai said the office would try to link similar student groups together to try to create more productive and effective events on campus.

The office would also provide outreach to first-year students about ASUCD. Holloway said the office would try to create a program specifically targeting the campus' first-year students about what ASUCD is, why it is important, and what they can do to get involved with the association.

The proposed campus outreach and organization office is the first thing that the L.E.A.D. team said it wanted to get into the 2005-2006 budget.

Holloway and Assagai have also made it a priority to try to increase student power at the city level by getting Choice Voting approved for the Davis city elections.

The L.E.A.D. candidates said they would like to get a student voice in the Davis City Council and that Choice Voting is the best way to do that.

Along the same idea, the L.E.A.D. presidential team said it also wanted to increase the student voters' power by holding more voter registration drives. Holloway said these would be especially important in elections that featured issues significant to the student population, like noise violations and the open container policy.