USG Presidential Debate

Candidates: Taylor Gladys (running unopposed)

Biographical information
Third year biochemistry major, minor in political science
Current Position: VP of Student Life (previously Chief Judicial Officer, Freshman Representative)

Initiatives she has worked on include:
Tobacco free policy
Saferide system

On next year:
“In my time in USG, I’ve seen a pattern of how to get things done. The things I want to capitalize on next year to improve our efficiency in USG is accessibility and transparency, communication and collaboration, and organization and follow through.
“I want to avoid the idea of us versus them with the administration. They’re here to help us.”
“I want to work with the vice presidents as well as representatives to make sure that whenever we say we’re going to do something we get it done.”

I am considered a minority here in many different aspects and I happen to be friends with those that identify themselves as minorities too. As a representative of the student body, you need to serve both the masses and the minorities on campus. How will you represent us and make sure that our voices are heard as well?
“This is a very interesting question because it’s something that recently came up in my time as VP of student life. I went to a student affairs luncheon and some minority students there were expressing how difficult it is at CWRU for them. To that extent, I would really like to work at the Office of Minority and Cultural Affairs, working both with administration there and students. I want to make sure that when CWRU talks about diversity, we really value diversity, and make sure that everyone here feels valued.”

How do you feel about professional student organizations, such as Case EMS or the college radio station WRUW, paying their members?
“Honestly, as long as the Student Activities Fee isn’t going to those salaries, they’re within their rights to pay those students. I think if the SAF is going to that purpose, that’s not what we’re about, and we need to make sure the standards are consisted within our organization.”

How do you deal with consistency among organizations that have advertising money and SAF money coming in?
“I would like to get set budgets for those organizations, to see if those with ad money could lean a little less on the SAF to make it fair for other organizations. If you have the ability to sustain yourself, then why not. That SAF money can go to other groups and further supplement community at CWRU.”

Recent opinion columns in The Observer have noted perceived inequalities between Fraternity and Sorority in Greek Life.   An example can be found in the differences between Fraternity informal recruitment and the rigidity of Sorority formal recruitment.  As president of the student body, do you believe this perceived imbalance needs addressing?
“I think that is a question that would be directed towards Panhel and IFC. If students brought it to USG as a big concern, I would bring it to the appropriate bodies. But I can’t step on the toes of those other organizations.”
“I feel that because that system falls under their jurisdiction, I would have to bring it to [Panhel and IFC].”
(Note from staff reporter Julia Bianco: Gladys brushed off this question, mostly saying that it was a Greek life issue.)
“I think that the SEC is a really important group of students. It’s the student leaders who are charged with properly using the SAF, and they have more responsibility on their shoulders.”

As president, do you believe you are first a liaison from the students to CWRU administration or from the administration to the students?
“The first one, definitely. I think it’s really important to be on the same page with the administration, and to make sure relations are good. I think first and foremost we are responsible to students.”

What do you foresee as the biggest challenges for this position?
“Trying to make sure that I’m representing every student on this campus and not leaning one way or another. Being a single representative of that will be a tough thing to fulfill, but I’ll make it work.”

As president of USG, what actions would you take to solve some of the more recurring issues?
“What I would want to do is sit down with whoever in USG that specific thing applies to, whether its a student life or academic affairs issue, something like that, and come up with a plan for how we’re going to tackle it. I want to come up with next steps and a long term goal of how we’re going to get there. I developed a three stage plan of how to get things done next year because I’m really tired of hearing the same issues every year. It makes USG seem very inefficient and ineffective.”

Many candidates have talked about the need for internal development being high on their list, should they be elected. What would the students who vote for you be able to see during the first few months?
“That move towards accessibility and transparency. I firmly believe that while there are certain issues I do want to tackle, and I know that from the start, the most important thing for USG is that the students and constituents are setting the agenda for the year. As soon as we get back in the fall, I want to make sure we start looking at the issues right away, and talking to students about what issues they see. I want to set up action plans on how we’re going to tackle those issues.”