The 2022 ASSU elections: A voter’s guide for contested races

April 21, 2022, 1:37 a.m.

After the first in-person campaign season in two years, students will vote on Thursday and Friday for next year’s Associated Students of Stanford University (ASSU) representatives.

Three slates are competing for the ASSU Executive position, while 17 candidates are vying for 15 spots on the Undergraduate Senate. Two slates, RISES and SPARC, are running for the Sophomore Class Presidents position. A third slate, Root 4 Trees, was eligible for the ballot, but announced that it was withdrawing its candidacy on social media.

Five candidates are running for spots on the Graduate Student Council, which has 15 spots available. When spots are left vacant on the GSC after election, the council’s co-chairs typically reach out to groups and individuals and ask them to serve. Any candidates selected after the election process will be voted on by the sitting GSC councilors.

One slate is running unopposed for Junior Class Presidents, and the same holds for the Senior Class Presidents.

Students will also vote on several amendments to the ASSU constitution, including Single Transferable Voting for Undergraduate Senate Elections, Judicial Reforms, Gender Neutral Language and a Non-Discrimination Statement.

Additionally, students will vote on whether to approve or reject funding for student organizations. Stanford’s Sexual Health Peer Resource Center (SHPRC) will appear on the ballot alongside the full funding that they initially requested — $56,800— after obtaining more than 1,000 signatures (15% of the undergraduate population) in support of their petition disputing the lower amount recommended by the Senate.

Every eligible voter will receive an emailed link to the general election ballot, and the election will be held from Thursday at 12 a.m. to Friday at 11:59 p.m. Results will be announced Monday, April 25 at 5 p.m.

Below is a guide to the contested races: the Undergraduate Senate election, the Executive election and the Sophomore Class Presidents election.

ASSU Undergraduate Senate Candidates

Singh is a sophomore at Stanford.

Ayoob is studying Computer Science and Music: Vocal Performance and is involved in business clubs and music-related activities on campus. His priorities are inclusive education, socioeconomic equity, “empathetic academic policy,” and creating a “less stressful” college environment. He plans to create mentorship opportunities and study groups, promote equal opportunity and treatment for all majors and work to provide “more welcoming and available” mental health resources on campus. He also hopes to “be a voice for those that are not as comfortable sharing their experiences at Stanford.”
Dehmani is a sophomore studying political science. She currently serves as Parliamentarian for the Undergraduate Senate and has prioritized working on accessibility in space, as well as representation for frosh and transfer students. She plans to push for more accessibility on campus by creating more accessible parking spaces, particularly for electric vehicles, and promoting the new Disability Community Space. She aims to “end the mandatory reporting system in the alcohol policy,” reform policies on leaves of absence, and improve mental health care on campus. She also hopes to expand access to the Marguerite on weekends and continue free surveillance covid testing on campus “for at least one more year. Within the Senate, she plans to apply her institutional knowledge to design lessons on “Senate 101” for new senators and increase the Senate’s social media outreach.
Amoo is a frosh from the rural community of Scottsbluff, Nebraska, studying Earth Systems and International Relations. Amoo’s passions include environmental and racial justice, first-generation and low-income (FLI) advocacy, public service, mental health, queer and gender-marginalized rights, and accessibility. Amoo’s goals include making mental health resources “more available and tailored to student needs,” increasing transparency between the Senate and the student body, and “making campus a safer place for historically marginalized communities.”

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Bahia is a sophomore from Modesto, CA, studying biology. Bahia has expressed a desire to combat “continued patterns of prejudice, inequality, and neglect that have been embedded within Stanford.” Areas of reform include racial justice, inequality, representation, accessibility of transportation, and mental health. Bahia wants to implement more programs “geared towards helping those from underrepresented groups” and would like to make sure that mental health care is “more accessible and funded.”

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Becerra is a first-year transfer student studying Political Science. He served as the inaugural Transfer Ex Officio Member on the Undergraduate Senate and authored legislation calling on Stanford “to provide a permanent space for a Transfer Student Center.” His goals include expanding mental health resources, uplifting the voices of historically marginalized communities, expanding the representation of transfer and veteran students, and promoting environmental justice and sustainability on campus. He hopes to establish “dedicated financial aid counselors” for transfers and FLI students, create a $1,000 “Welcome Grant” for FLI-transfer students, improve housing options for transfer students, and provide funding for FLI and transfer students to receive “free public transportation and school supplies.”

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Molloy is a Caribbean-American student who is passionate about “diversifying and uplifting the black experience” at Stanford. Molloy currently serves as a dorm representative on Frosh Council and as an ex-officio member on the Undergraduate Senate. Molloy plans to advocate for “increased financial accessibility” to courses and activities on campus, promote “open-minded and candid dialogue” amongst students and faculty, and advocate for “student safety” on campus.

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Sarrafian is a junior and a resident assistant (RA) for a frosh dorm, who has “seen firsthand the stark differences in the Stanford dorm experience” under the new ResX system. Sarrafian’s goals are “reforming the new ResX alcohol policy, reshaping ReX community programs, and revitalizing neighborhood-specific wellbeing resources” through increasing transparency among residents and their dorm staff and encouraging neighborhood events.
Kagurabadza is a frosh from Long Beach, CA, studying Political Science and American Studies. He serves on the Frosh Council Executive Board, the Undergraduate Senate Association program, and as one of the first-ever ex-officio Frosh Representatives to the ASSU. He is “uniquely familiar” with the Senate’s operations and hopes to “support student needs, access, and resources.”

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Lyles is a sophomore who currently serves as an Undergraduate Senator, and is hoping to continue “good, meaningful work” in the Senate next year.
Shrestha worked to increase sustainability and address diversity, equity, and inclusion in her high school’s school district. She was a founding member of her school’s diversity committee and received DEI training, working to “address equity concerns” in her district. She hopes to “enact meaningful institutional change” at Stanford by expanding “spaces and support systems for marginalized communities,” “diversifying mental health resources,” and increasing sustainability and transparency.
Tillery is a public service scholar and a frosh service liaison who serves on the Advisory Board for the Haas Center’s Partnerships for Climate Justice in the Bay Area Initiative. She aims to promote “actionable and progressive reform” that will benefit marginalized students on campus. She plans to support resolutions addressing racial justice, such as African and African American Studies departmentalization. She hopes to “disband and defund” SUPDS and “move away from police in 5150s,” reallocating money to “supporting the Stanford community with an emphasis on mental health resources.” She plans to expand access to mental health resources by diversifying CAPS staff and creating a fund to cover expenses like copays. She also hopes to expand transportation resources, implement university-wide accessibility measures, eliminate course fees for FLI students, and make admissions permanently test-blind.

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Beyene currently serves as an Undergraduate Senator and has worked to “push back” on alcohol policy revisions, advocate for accommodations amidst the transition to in-person learning, and “illuminate the shortcomings” of the Stanford Police Department via campus-wide surveying. She was appointed Deputy Communications Chair, where she founded quarterly town halls and authorized campus-wide surveys about policies impacting marginalized students. She has also contributed legislation supporting the “open-door” alcohol policy and extending the C/NC grading policy during the pandemic. In the future, some of the reforms she hopes to institute include expanding academic accommodations, establishing a “biracial community space,” diversifying CAPS employees, and re-launching the ASSU website.
Tati is a frosh from Haddon Heights, NJ who is passionate about public service and “grassroots community-based organizing efforts.” Tati identifies as a member of the queer community who grew up in a low-income household. Tati worked under a current Undergraduate Senator through the Senate Association Program (SAP), where he co-authored a resolution on “Stanford’s relationship with Bay Area housing.” Tati hopes to improve mental health and healthcare services at Stanford through reforms like pairing BIPOC and DLI students with counselors with “shared identities” and creating an “‘on-call’ CAPS service.” He will call on Stanford to fully divest its endowment from the fossil industry and raise wage ceilings and provide subsidies for campus workers. He hopes to increase “mandated racial bias training” for faculty and administrators, “reallocate Stanford police department funds” to student health resources and campus groups, and require “free access to menstrual products” in every bathroom on campus.

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Wood is a sophomore studying Environmental Systems Engineering who identifies as a “queer, FLI, Indigenous/Latine” student. Arguing that it is “extremely difficult” for “underrepresented students to thrive” at Stanford, Wood plans to advocate for increased support for marginalized students, improved access to resources related to mental and physical health, and “radical changes in Stanford’s relationship to the environment.”

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)
Huerta hopes to be an “uplifter” in the Senate and plans to “oppose and seek the repeal of” the University’s neighborhood system and the alcohol policy.
Malaekeh is a frosh studying Economics and Political Science from Loomis, CA. Malaekah is a “first-generation American” coming from a rural and “traditional conservative region” who hopes to “bridge ideological divides” and promote an equitable and inclusive environment for students. Malaekah’s goals include improving the accessibility of mental health and academic resources for marginalized students, “fostering free-flowing dialogue,” advocating for sustainability and action on climate change, and “increasing the ease” with which student groups can “host social events and cultivate community” on campus.

ASSU Sophomore Class President Slates

Members: Shreya Ramachandran, Lindsey Holiday, Hasan Ahmad and Siddharth Sharma

R.I.S.E. (Reimagining Inclusivity and Social Engagement at Stanford) aims to sponsor class-wide events that “cater to everyone,” advocate for inclusivity, and promote “well-being across campus.” They aim to partner with CAPS to create “Monthly Mental Health Awareness and Boba Nights”, organize off-campus trips, and “lobby to bring back” late-night dining at Arrillaga. Ramachandran serves as a representative on Frosh Council and is a passionate environmental advocate, while Ahmad is an international student that hopes to prioritize “creating social experiences for students with different interests and backgrounds.” Sharma says he “values the on-campus experience” and hopes to organize social mixers and a “Wellness Week.” Holiday hails from a small town in Wyoming and hopes to focus on supporting students’ mental health.
Members: Divya Ganesan, Hlumelo Notshe, Alex Selwyn, Tobey Solomon

S.P.A.R.C. (Sophomore Presidents are Reigniting Card) emphasize that their three primary goals are to bring back traditions, unite the class of 2025 “beyond neighborhood bounds,” and “restore” mental health. Each member of the slate hails from a different part of campus (Crothers, Flo-Mo, Lag, and GovCo, respectively). The slate features Ex-Officio ASSU reps, Senate SAPS, and representatives to the Frosh Council. SPARC’s members underscore their “dynamic platform” which is “constantly adapting to the changing needs” of the class of 2025. SPARC hopes to organize cross-campus social events, “non-Greek life social opportunities,” and a “Tradition database” to bring back and create social traditions on campus. To promote diversity and equity, they hope to “create funds for accessibility” to social events and promote affinity spaces. They also plan to create a “sophomore specific guide” for accessing “Stanford therapists and consultants” and will host “office hours” both with students and administrators to improve transparency. They hope to collaborate with the ISC and IFC to provide “sexual assault training.”.

ASSU Executive President Slates

Thompson and Sanchez are “members of the international, FLI, transfer, black and Latinx communities” who are passionate about “advocating for the holistic wellbeing” of Stanford in its entirety. They have served as the Deputy Chair of the Undergraduate, and Executive Fellow for Transfer Advocacy. Their past achievements include advocating for extended library hours during finals week, increasing frosh representation on the Senate, and supporting ASSU’s COVID-19 Isolation Aid and Course Access Programs. To promote student wellbeing, they are advocating for policies such as sustaining social programming through Cardinal Nights and diversifying CAPS employees. They also intend to push for need-blind admissions for international students, increased financial aid for transfer students, and institutionalized mutual aid funds for FLI students. They hope to revive the Green Fund at Stanford and reduce food waste through investigating policies like repurposing food for home shelters.

Endorsements: Stanford’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee

Santo serves as an undergraduate senator and faculty representative of the Undergraduate Senate to the Faculty Senate, while Schell is a co-chair on the Diversity and Advocacy Committee on the Graduate Student Council, Faculty Senate co-representative from the GSC, and student representative to the Student, Alumni and External Affairs Committee on the Stanford Board of Trustees. Santo and Schell spearheaded “The Anti-Doxxing Recommendations ACT” which facilitated the Faculty Senate’s addition of doxxing to its interpretation of Fundamental Standard violations. They have also contributed to legislation encouraging educational equity and advocated for improved affordability of education and healthcare. They hope to align their governance with the Stanford community by increasing transparency, conducting surveys, and hosting town halls. They will also push to “increase institutional investment” in student well-being services and continue fighting for “greater affordability”, particularly for FLI students, doctoral students, and international students.

Phan has served in the ASSU since freshman year, as a SAPling and two-term senator. Her areas of focus are “mental health advocacy, sexual violence prevention, and academic accommodations.” She helped to reorganize the CAP website and distribute graphics of the Title IX process to make campus resources more accessible to students. Nichols currently serves as Senate Co-Chair and as Co-President of the Black Student Union, identifying as a “Black, FLI, and queer woman.” They hope to fight for racial justice on campus by creating a “direct resource” to “report policing incidents on campus” and demand “increased transparency” from the Community Board on Public Safety. They will also push CAPS to hire more staff and institutionalize “mental health and wellness days” for students to take each quarter. They will revamp the ASSU website and work toward “accelerating time” to create student groups and receive funding. They will offer their support for a Stanford Workers Union, fighting for increased pay for Stanford workers, and improve accessibility by re-establishing C/NC policies in major classes. They will push for “increased privacy and safety measures” in the Title IX Office, establish an anonymous form to report sexual violence, and “eliminate the binary” in Stanford documents by replacing the phrase “his or her” with “their.”

Endorsements: Stanford’s First-Generation and/or Low-Income Partnership (FLIP)

Cassidy Dalva '25 is a News Managing Editor at The Stanford Daily. A prospective economics major from Los Angeles, California, Cassidy enjoys baking, playing pickleball, and spending time outdoors in her free time. Contact her at [email protected].

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