Spring Elections: Joshua Nguyen Student Services VP Candidate Q & A
NU: What is your history with ASUCI, your accomplishments, and why do you feel qualified for the position?
JN: I’m currently in my second year of ASUCI Student Services, both years as a Concert Commissions intern. The reason I feel I am qualified for this is that as an intern, I have stepped up and taken a leadership role and have done more than what an intern is required to do. Last year I helped make the offer for the headliner of Reggaefest, this year I’ve done a lot of research on artists who could perform at Welcome Week, Schocktoberfest, and I’m helping out a lot on the current Reggaefest, so I feel like I have a lot of experience planning.
I believe that this experience can be moved on to next year, and being in a fraternity as marketing chair, I’ve done a lot of reaching out to other companies, trying to help further my fraternity, so I feel that my experiences like that could help further ASUCI.
NU: In that past ASUCI has had to dip into reserve funds to put on Reggaefest. How would you change the way that ASUCI handles these funds?
JN: One thing in my platform is a stricter control of funds and better monetary policy. I want to make sure money goes where it can go and where it should go. That means cutting events that maybe aren’t so popular with students in my own branch. That’s something I would have to do if I want to make sure Reggaefest is something everyone wants, and that it would be something really good. Better budget control is what I can say.
NU: How would you improve ASUCI’s relationship with students in terms of acknowledging input?
JN: I’ve been thinking about this a lot. One thing I think would be very feasible is if I just ask organizations on campus to send me your three most wanted for this event, or send me what you want to see at UCI this year. If we can just tally up what’s most popular we can hopefully throw that type of event. So if any student asks, “Why did you have him at Schocktoberfest?” we can show them the results. This is what the school voted on this year, this is what you guys wanted, I think that is something very feasible.
I think it might take a little time reading through all the emails, but that is something any VP should be willing to do if you want to be successful. And there’s been a lot of disagreements about how Schocktoberfest went and how Welcome Week went, and I really just want to fix that in general. I want students to think, “ASUCI is here for me and they’re doing what we want at UCI.”
NU: So what kind of changes would you make to Schocktoberfest?
JN: The past few years… I don’t know how I would clarify the type of music, but it has been more, I guess, rough hip-hop where it promotes that type of rowdiness in everyone. I don’t think that is a smart move for next year. Even though it’s extremely popular, I think we would have to switch the music, something where people can still have a lot of fun. I honestly do think EDM is a great way to go right now, because events always generally go well and there aren’t a lot of problems. So I think if we go that route and ensure pro staff that there is not going to be a lot of problems, they will allow us to go on the floor again. They won’t turn on the lights, they give us a lot of issues. I want to be as compliant as possible, but then fix the damages that were done this year.
NU: What sort of new approach would you bring to student services?
JN: I want to bring new events here to UCI. I do believe that the past few years have been pretty stagnant about what UCI wants, and it’s been pretty complacent about how student life is in general. Fullerton had an ice skating rink this year, and I do believe that is something really cool that could happen here at UCI. During winter quarter, it could be a great tool for students to just relieve a bit of stress before finals, go skating for 30 minutes. I know UCSD has a pancakes breakfast for students. Something small where students can see, “this is student life at UCI.”
I really just want to learn from other student governments at other schools and see what they’re doing right and hopefully change it here at UCI, because I do believe it has been pretty stagnant about what VP’ view what could happen here at UCI.