A Better Baruch sweeps USG elections
All seats for next year's USG go to Better Baruch team member
Published: Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Updated: Monday, April 30, 2012 21:04
A Better Baruch swept the election for the 2012-2013 Undergraduate Student Government, as all 52 Better Baruch members, led by President-elect Chris Catalano and Vice President-elect Santiago Mueckay were elected by hundreds of student-voters to represent the college’s undergraduate students.
In addition to Catalano and Mueckay, the team’s executive board includes juniors Hiren Desai as Treasurer and Amrita Narine as Secretary.
Better Baruch’s victory over Connect with Baruch and Suit Up Baruch is the result of months of planning by team leaders. Planning efforts paid off, evident by the landslide results of three days of voting.
The voting period concluded at 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 26. Throughout the week, the second floor of the Vertical Campus was scattered and sometimes mobbed with clusters of the parties’ candidates and supporters.
Students heading to and from class had no choice but to navigate through dozens of logo-clad campaigners running on little sleep and lots of energy drinks, handing out hundreds of fliers.
As expected, the loudest and most party-inclusive day of campaigning and voting was the result day, Thursday. As day shifted into night, the nervousness of party leaders was evident.
Members of A Better Baruch smiled and continued approaching students over the course of the evening. These senatorial, board, and committee candidates pleaded with passersby for time, and managed to persuade a few students to take a detour into the voting booths.
For the first time all week, Suit Up Baruch seemed particularly constrained against the backdrop of potential voters. As Thursday’s voting period came to an end, the team that had earlier seemed focused on intercepting students in mid-conversation with other party candidates instead stood together and chatted tiredly amongst themselves.
Connect with Baruch finally made a noticeable appearance on the second floor. Although reports of their classroom visits throughout the week were particularly high, they neglected to create a continuous presence in the most highly foot-trafficked areas of the VC.
As the voting booths closed, student candidates on the second floor began to applaud and cheer: it was over, all lay in the hands of the vote-counters. Although some presidential and vice presidential candidates appeared on the verge of physical illness, most candidates were giddy, as they celebrated their campaigns and recognized the election’s finality.
Teams settled down and dissipated to various nooks, crannies, benches and bars while vote counters and Office of Student Life representatives kicked into gear. Team leaders huddled, paced and camped out close by.
Approximately three hours after voting ended, Student Life representatives broke the overwhelming tension in the air by announcing the results of the ballots they had tabulated thus far. The votes showed that Better Baruch had over 400 votes, Suit Up Baruch had over 200 votes, and Connect with Baruch had over 100 votes.
Although some nerves began to melt away, Better Baruch leaders confessed that they were not ready to conclusively share information with their team, until they knew about the statuses of each contested position.
Meanwhile, most Better Baruch team members had gathered on the second floor, parallel to the building’s express elevators. The team audibly continued to have a good time. This was comforting to both Catalano and Mueckay.
At approximately 11 p.m., Assistant Director of Student Life Ben Messner was ready to announce the uncertified results of the elections.
“This is what we can tell you, that for President, Chris Catalano, for Vice President, Santiago, for Treasurer, Hiren, and for secretary Amrita, and we can say that everything else was also a clean sweep across the board. A Better Baruch took every other position,” Messner said.
Director of Student Life, Shadia Sachedina added on, “Official results will be released next Monday, because we need to have them certified by SERC.”
Even though parties had already been clued into what the likely outcome would be, the shock of the results remained clearly evident on everyone’s faces.
Catalano and Mueckay, followed by a small group of photographers and supporters led the way up to the second floor, where almost the entire Better Baruch team stood together waiting.
They grouped around Catalano, who wasted little time before divulging that Better Baruch had not merely won, but won every single position. The team responded with an appropriately ear-shattering cheer. In celebratory delirium, team members hugged, high-fived and grinned ear-to-ear.