Image courtesy FHSU Student Government Association Facebook page
BY CORIE LYNN
For the first time in four years, FHSU’s Student Government Association will have two tickets running for President and Vice President in the organization’s spring elections.
Mark Faber and Ryan Stanely represent one of these tickets.
Both are heavily involved at FHSU as they are pole vaulters on the track team. Faber, a pre-med major, is also the Vice President of the American Healthy Heart Association while Stanley, a business management major, is a part of Christian Challenge and serves as a VIP Ambassador.
The two decided to run for President and Vice President based on their prior experience serving with SGA.
Though Faber is in his first year as a student senator, Stanley has served the past three years and has experience chairing the Allocations and Appropriations Committees. This experience inspired him to run for Vice President.
“So I have a pretty good understanding of how SGA works, what our role is in the University, and then because of that, I see a lot of ways that things can be different, I guess,” Stanley said.
Faber chose to run after seeing that there are still areas to improve the University.
One such improvement is a renewed focus on environmental sustainability.
“Since this last year, we didn’t really have a lot of options for the Caf other than to do to-go boxes,” Stanley said. “And it was kind of just really hard watching all of that styrofoam get used every day.”
Due to the pandemic forcing organizations to cancel events, the two plan to encourage student engagement in the coming semester.
“We need a lot of opportunities for freshmen and then also sophomores that kind of lost their chance to do that engagement,” Faber said, “to be able to engage, make friends and get to the part of their life where they want to be super involved on campus because that’s what you would want.”
As President and Vice President, Faber and Stanley would also like to focus on mental health resources for students and ensuring every voice is heard.
On this latter point, they hope to work with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and to fill vacant Senate seats with members of the Black Student Union, the Hispanic-American Leadership Organization and additional diverse voices on campus.
“Yeah, we just want everybody to feel accepted in everything they do,” Faber said. “Feel like if they want to join a club, they can join a club. They don’t have to worry.”
The final goal they listed in their platform is to ensure fair funding practices in the Allocations and Appropriations processes. They plan to achieve this through reviewing the funding guide and finding alternative sources of funding for campus organizations that require large budgets from the SGA.
Stanley used the example of the Shooting Team, which has the potential to qualify as a university sport.
“That takes sometimes $50,000 out of the allocations budget, so if we found alternate ways for them to get their funding, that’s fair for them and also just not pushing them to make decisions they don’t want to,” Stanley said.
He and Faber explained that they chose this platform because the issues are relevant to the current campus climate and because these are issues that the senators revisit each year without making changes.
Going forward, Faber and Stanley believe they can put their plan into action by networking across campus and no longer allowing conversations to die in Senate.
“We just really want to see a student government that is super engaged,” Faber said, “and when they bring up problems, we can get them all the different routes to go about making that change, so that if there is something senators are really passionate about, they can take that into their own hands.”
As they look forward to the next semester, he and Stanley are excited to get straight to work, should students elect them.
For Stanley, this includes the opportunity to meet individuals and organizations across campus and for Faber, decreased Covid-19 regulations leading to greater student engagement.
“I would really like to see that because that’s something that has been lacking this year, for obvious reasons,” he said.
As they continue to campaign, Faber and Stanley feel confident in their potential to serve FHSU as Student Body President and Vice President.
They describe their own motivation as coming from their shared faith and ideals, which helps them work as a team.
“The opportunity [to run] just kind of popped up,” Stanley said. “I think we’re very, I don’t want to use the term equally yoked, but we’re very on the same page about a lot of things, with our motivation.”
Voting begins at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday on TigerLink and closes at 4:30 p.m. Thursday. Additional information about this year’s elections is available online.