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First-Year Senators Elected

New+SGA+Senators+David+Vargas+%28left%29+and+John+Schurer+%28right%29
New SGA Senators David Vargas (left) and John Schurer (right)

New SGA Senators David Vargas (left) and John Schurer (right)

Silvia Cantu Bautista

Silvia Cantu Bautista

New SGA Senators David Vargas (left) and John Schurer (right)

By BEN DOHAN

First-year students John Schurer and David Vargas won the Student Government Association (SGA) election for first-year senator. Over half of the Class of 2021 voted, with 322 ballots cast.

Ten students competed for the two spots. Schurer finished first with twenty percent of the vote (130 ballots total), leading Vargas, with 14.5 percent of the vote (93 ballots). Vargas beat the next closest competitor, Eun Ho Lee, by a mere ten votes.

However, the top three finishers account for only forty-seven percent of cast ballots.

Vargas said he is excited to be “representing one of Middlebury’s largest and most diverse classes in recent memory.” On winning such a tightly contested election, he said it carries “as much honor as it does responsibility.”

A member of the First-Year Committee, Institutional Diversity Committee and the Sexual and Relationship Respect Committee, Vargas feels that his activities on campus provide him with “the capacity to facilitate change.”

For his upcoming term in SGA, Vargas said his three main goals are to “help Middlebury better recognize and address gender-based violence on campus, open new avenues of communication between the student body and the administration that promote transparency and accountability and expand access to facilities and resources.” Vargas will be one of many voices attempting to promote transparency within the administration, an increasingly prevalent topic of political discourse on campus.

Schurer highlighted the personal relationship he hopes to build with his constituents. His first goal is an ambitious one: “to get to know each and every person in the Class of 2021, not only by name and face but by story, identity, interests and aspirations.”

Such a goal is crucial, Schurer said, in order for him to “have a comprehensive perspective and accurate pulse on my classmates’ expectations, needs, and desires.” Indeed, he said, such personal connections are necessary in order to achieve true representation.

“If I am supposed to ‘represent’ the Class of 2021, then it is only right that I make a great effort to represent each and every person who comprises it,” he said.

Like Vargas, Schurer emphasized institutional accountability, noting that through personal relationships, “we can create a culture of transparency and approachability in which everyone feels extremely welcome talking to me about anything.”

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