The preliminary results of the Student Government Association (SGA) election for the 2020-2021 academic year are in and Julia Nicolls is the SGA president-elect.
Voting was available online to all students from March 30 at 6:00 a.m. until March 31 at 3:00 p.m.
Nicolls, a diplomacy and international relations major and SGA diplomacy senator, ran on a ticket that included ad-hoc Senator Charles McGarry, Senator Ron Babiak and Senator Raven Campbell as vice president, treasurer and secretary, respectively. As of April 1, Nicolls had listed SGA “Student Body President” on her LinkedIn page.
“Charles [McGarry] is someone I really enjoy working with and we have been good friends since freshman year through SGA and through Greek Life,” Nicolls said. “He is definitely a great “partner in crime” so to speak and will be a great person to lean on in the coming year.”
Senator Babiak “has a lot of wisdom and experience to bring to the table. Serving as finance committee chair for the past two years has allowed for a perfect transition to treasurer, but I am beyond excited to see what he accomplishes outside of that specific role,” Nicolls said about the rest of her ticket.
“Raven [Campbell] is the most positive one in the group and is always willing to go the extra mile, which is essential as secretary,” she continued. “I cannot think of a better person to be working with student organizations on campus.”
While Nicolls acknowledges that this is a “difficult and hectic time” for both students and administration due to COVID-19, she said that she is “extremely excited to have the opportunity to serve the student body … I am hopeful that I can lead the University during these trying times.”
As for Nicolls’ supporters, she thanked them for believing in the goals she set out and also recognizing her accomplishments over her past two terms in the senate.
“For Senator Ferreira's supporters, I say that I want to be the leader that is necessary at this time and that I want to be the person that they can count on,” Nicolls said.
“Regardless of who people supported or if they voted at all, I still have to earn the trust and respect of the student body through action and that is the best way to unite the two student groups,” she continued.
During the presidential debate, Ferreira called into question Nicolls’ dedication to certain student organizations. Nicolls said in the debate that while she “made mistakes,” there was always “room for improvement.”
Between now and April 6, Nicolls expects a “transition period” involving current SGA President Rishi Shah and the SGA executive board.
“Overall, I want to focus on the team aspect of the executive board rather than solely the president,” Nicolls said of her upcoming plans as president-elect. “My immediate goals are to establish the liaisons to different organizations on campus with the Presidential Cabinet which will be completed within the next month.”
“I have already spoken to the Black Caucus on what this will look like. For my long-term goals, I plan on continuing and completing the goals I set out to do like tuition transparency, textbook affordability, etc.,” Nicolls said.
“The main challenge is a lack of access to information,” Nicolls said of her next steps. “A lot of the situation depends on outside factors that the University has little to no control over, or the process is difficult to decide on making information come out in a less-than timely manner.”
When asked what message she would send to the Seton Hall student body in the upcoming weeks, Nicolls said, “I want to be a resource for every student in these trying times. [T]ext me, call me, blow up my Instagram DM's. This is a difficult time to be a college student and I want to do everything in my power to serve the student body and represent everyone. As well, I know I will have to continue to earn the respect and trust of the student body during my term in office.”
Marie Leone can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.