‘School spirit’ and ‘pride’ were echoed constantly during the debate at the Plaza del Sol. For these candidates, the need for more school spirit amongst their contingency was one of the priorities they set out to achieve while disagreeing on everything else.
Freshmen candidates for the Associated Students (A.S.) lower-division seat stated their opinions about the possibility of matador statue, security, student retention rates and recycling.
Freshman status and the need for more school spirit were the only two items these candidates had in common.
When it came towards student retention rates the candidates disagreed about the methods that should be implemented.
For Steve Atcheson, a business marketing major, the need for more student resources needs to be readily available in order for students to do better.
‘Retention rates are tied to school spirit,’ said candidate Cesar Bahamonde, a double major in astrophysics and finance. ‘We need to get more students excited about CSUN,’ he said.
Bahamonde argued that more resources allocated to athletics would generate more excitement than erecting a matador statue, which has been under discussion.
Disagreeing with Bahamonde was candidate Sejin Park, a business administration major.
‘The matador statue will be necessary because it holds value about what we are about,’ said Park.
Candidate Stephanie Vajda, a communications major, believes that the matador statue is worth obtaining only if non-student fees are used. But in terms of allocating more funds towards campus security, Vajda felt that there is ‘no rush.’
Atcheson thought differently and advocated for a ‘better screening process’ when hiring the student Matador Patrol officers, suggesting official training by law enforcement as a way to enhance their performance.
When it came to the Recycling Center being allocated $159,000 while only receiving $8,000 in revenue, candidate Vajda felt that there is a need to reevaluate the way the recycling center has been spending their money.
On the other hand, Bahamonde felt that funding was not the problem, but the need to promote recycling on campus.
‘There needs to be more incentives for students to recycle,’ said Bahamonde. ‘We need to provide more information for students about what the center does and find ways we can make more revenue.’
Concluding the debates the candidates agreed that more student involvement is necessary to keep students enrolled and to create more school spirit.