DETROIT — At raves, the prom and just for the hell of it, Logan Corcoran took Ecstasy. Now she’s worried. But not for herself.
The election of a president, vice president and 10 senators from The Connection slate has raised questions of fair campaigning and the future of ASUNM. Sen. Tim Serna, former presidential candidate on The People slate, said he and his running mates were in the Student Services Center watching the Election Commission tally votes when they heard they had lost.
The UNM School of Law is sponsoring a groundbreaking ceremony today at 3 p.m. to celebrate a 32,000 square foot addition to Bratton Hall. During the ceremony Law School Dean Robert Desiderio is scheduled to announce details of a major grant that will help fund the construction project.
Police are searching for a black male who attacked two women during the past two weeks in the parking structure on Campus and Lomas Boulevards north of Hokona Hall, according to UNM police reports. A female UNM resident told campus police she was walking to her car in the parking structure at 7:40 a.m. on April 3. She reported that while she was walking up the stairs, she saw a black male walking down. She told police that as he passed her, the man reached up and grabbed her breast. The woman reported that she pushed him away and went up the stairs. She told police he did not chase her but said, “What are you getting all mad for?”
The race between three second-year UNM Law School students ended Friday when Rachel Jenks became the new president of the Graduate and Professional Student Association by 29 votes. GPSA Election chairman Tony Long said Jenks had 159 votes, Dathan Weems had 130 and Keith Valles had 44. He said five votes were disqualified because social security numbers were not filled in on the ballots. Three people voted for Law School write-in candidates who were in their last year and could not return to fill the presidency — probably a practical joke, Long said.
City Council President Brad Winter said during a meeting at Johnson Center Thursday that the baseball stadium controversy has been rushed to a May 30 vote because of a premature lease decision. Winter, who represents District Four in the far Northeast Heights, said because Mayor Jim Baca began negotiations with the Canadian Triple-A baseball team Calvary Cannons before he began negotiations on the stadium situation, the City Council was forced to make a quick decision.
The Connection slate made a clean sweep in Tuesday’s ASUNM presidential election, with Sen. Andrea Cook and Sen. Steve Aguilar winning the president and vice-president positions, and the New Mexico Daily Lobo retaining $38,000 in student fees. Amendment One called for elimination of student fees that go to the Daily Lobo, allocates 3 percent to Conceptions Southwest and Best Student Essays and identifies the Student Government Accounting Office as the main budget office. The item passed a majority vote by 796-765 but did not pass the two-thirds majority needed.
M. Nicol†s Cabrera, a sophomore double majoring in Communication and Journalism and Spanish, is the only independent candidate running for the ASUNM Senate. “I just believe students have a right to have a independent voice that reflects their needs, and I didn’t agree with the slates, so I am running alone,” he said. He describes an ASUNM senator’s as a person who is servant leader. “A senator is a person who unselfishly works on behalf of others without expecting anything back in return,” he said. Cabrera said he feels qualified to serve as a senator because of his dedication to students and previous experience serving in local, state and national offices with DECA, an association of marketing students. If elected, Cabrera said his top priority would be to streamline the election process by letting students vote online via I-TEL-UNM. “I know GPSA already does it and I think it would be a good way to make elections easier on students,” he said. Cabrera said he also would like to consistently visit students, faculty, staff and organizations; establish an ASUNM calling card with proceeds benefiting a charitable civic organizaiton; improve access to alumni activities and career services; and promote ASUNM as an outlet for aspiring student leaders. He said the biggest challenge that ASUNM will face is working with students. “I think it’s a matter of bring the Senate back down to earth and maintaining the student government as it’s intended to be,” he said. When asked to name three members of the Board of Regents, the president of the University and three student groups, Cabrera named Begay-Campbell, Anaya and Herrera as regents; Dr. Gordon as president; and Phi Eta Sigma, Hispanic Honor Society, and American Indian Science and Engineering Society.
Senate candidate Jason Schaffer said that being a senator means to directly represent a diverse population of UNM students and responding to their needs and wants. Schaffer, a sophomore double majoring in political science and economics, said the Associated Students of UNM is a great way to get involved and help students out because he is very interested in all student organizations around campus. He said he is a resident assistant in the dorms and he’s gotten to see how things work around campus and his desire to get involved helped him decide to run for Senate. Schaffer said he wants to help senators become more connected with student groups and keep contact with student needs and support them, instead of just allocating funds to them and then leaving it at that.
Travis Clark, a junior majoring in biology, said he decided to run for office to become more involved in ASUNM. Clark said the role of a senator is to represent students. “Our job is to actually express the views of students and make sure we do everything we can to meet their needs,” Clark said. Clark said he feels qualified to serve as a senator because he thinks he can represent students well. “I feel like I can stand for people equally through diversity and representation,” he said.
Despite a vocal and lengthy protest by about 50 students Tuesday, the Board of Regents approved an 8.3 percent tuition and fee increase for graduate and undergraduate students. The regents quietly voted on the increase during the third hour of a five-hour meeting as students shouted about the issue, unaware the measure was being passed. Student Regent Eric Anaya voted against the increase, while Regent Sandra Begay-Campbell abstained. Regents Larry Willard, Judith Herrera, Jack Fortner and David Archuleta voted for the increase. The tuition increase was part of an action item that includes a 10 percent tuition and fee increase for law and medical students and 6.5 percent salary increases for faculty and staff.