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SGA presidential candidates debate

April 10, 2015

 

CALEB DANIEL
Staff Reporter

 

For those who cannot wait for the November 2016 presidential election, the excitement of elections has come early to Louisiana Tech.

 

The Student Government Association hosted a presidential debate Tuesday for the two candidates of the upcoming 2015-16 term.

 

The debate was between current SGA president Maggie Brakeville, a senior agricultural business major, and current SGA secretary Mackenzie Potts, a sophomore accounting major. Almost 40 students were in attendance.

 

Corey Green, commissioner of elections, said the goal of the debate was for students to get to know the candidates.

 

“We wanted to give the student body an opportunity to ask their questions in a personal way, as well as allowing the candidates to show their character and platform,” said Green, a senior sociology major.

 

The debate began with a list of previously prepared questions on a variety of topics. Each candidate was given 90 seconds to answer.

 

When asked about where Tech can use some improvement, Brakeville said she wants to increase student life activities.

 

“If you look around campus on the weekends, it’s pretty dead,” she said. “We need to increase student activities on campus and in town, especially on the weekends.”

 

Potts said she wants to promote unity between the organizations on campus.

 

“I want to see all facets of campus working together,” she said. “Yes, we’re all in our separate groups, but we’re all a proud part of Louisiana Tech.”

 

When asked what separates her from Brakeville, Potts highlighted her people skills.

 

“I’m a huge people person,” she said. “I like to be in the crowd. This is a representative job, and our decisions need to be for the students’ best interests.”

 

Brakeville said her years of work experience separate her from Potts.

 

“This would be my fifth year on the organization,” she said. “I have the experience and knowledge to move forward. I don’t feel in my heart that I’m done here at Louisiana Tech yet.”

 

The topics discussed included campus sustainability, student fees, crime on campus, and even the mascot, Tech 21. After the questions, the floor was open for students to voice their own comments and concerns.

 

One student in attendance was Kristie Braud, a sophomore elementary education major. She said she appreciated the direction both candidates took the debate.

 

“I like the way they focused on the betterment of the university as a whole, maintaining its sustainability into the future,” she said.

 

Student questions covered topics such as campus parking and growing enrollment. Braud said she was impressed with both candidates.

 

“They handled themselves professionally,” she said. “It wasn’t a hostile environment, very friendly.”

 

Leslie Sawyer, a freshman history major, also attended the debate. She said it is crucial that students take advantage of their voting power.

 

“We as students sometimes feel like we are helpless with our problems on campus,” she said. “But we forget that we do have a voice. Everyone is important.”

 

Email comments to csd020@latech.edu.

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