ASUCI Presidential Candidate Op-Eds: Mark Crawford

Over my college career I have gotten involved in many facets of the university life. I am currently serving as the treasurer of my fraternity for a second consecutive term. As treasurer, I have been successful in raising our chapter out of a considerable amount of debt. I was the vice president of Students with Entrepreneurial Talent Ambitions (SWETA) and am currently starting an organization on campus called the Students for Educational Equity, with the purpose of helping to bridge the educational achievement gap in America. Over the past three years, I have worked as an intern for Western Asset Management Company, the world’s third largest trader of fixed assets.

One of the major lessons I have learned from my involvement with all of these activities is the importance of transparency in an organization. This is one of my primary focuses in improving ASUCI. I would like to make sure that the ASUCI Web site is up to date and includes current minutes from meetings, minutes which have not been published at all over the past year.

Likewise, I would like to provide a monthly budget report so that students can see where ASUCI is spending its money. Aside from making it easier to find out what is going on with ASUCI, I feel like there are so many small things that we can do on campus to make all of our lives easier.

As president, one such adjustment that I would make is to increase the hours that Langson Library and the science library are open during finals week. Let’s face it, most people end up cramming before big tests and find it hard to get things done in Gateway. By keeping the libraries open longer, we can give everyone the chance to study in a quieter atmosphere. I would also try to keep the Student Center open later so that groups, such as dance crews, can utilize the facilities instead of practicing in campus parking lots. One other small implementation that I would like to see happen is placing porta-potties in the AV parking lots. Not only would this decrease the amount of judicial actions that are taken by UC Irvine police, but it would just be a lot less disgusting than what usually happens while waiting for buses on Thursday and Friday nights. These proposals all will cost more money; therefore, I propose that as a way to begin paying for them, we should cut stipends by 15 percent for all members in ASUCI. We are all elected officials, given positions of power by you, the students, and thus, we should be willing to take cuts in pay to better serve student needs.

By serving the needs of all students on campus, I feel I can set myself apart from the rest of the candidates. I want to work with students, organizations, the administration and the university as a whole to create a feeling of community that the campus is currently lacking.

Mark D. Crawford is a third-year political science major. He can be reached at mdcrawfo@uci.edu.