The SGA election is fast approaching with voting starting on April 5 and ending on April 7. With only a few days left until students cast their votes, three campaigns are running, with each trying to distinguish itself and earn students’ votes.
One campaign is the Hardee-Morris-McCandless campaign, comprised of Jennings Hardee running for president, Matthew Morris running for vice president and Caitlyn McCandless running for student services director.
If you were to ask any one of the candidates what is most important to them, he/she are mostly likely to say “the people.” One quick look through the campaign’s Facebook page shows this sentiment. Presidential candidate Hardee said that getting along with people is one of the most interesting talents she has.
“I’m really good at finding things in common with people,” Hardee said.
Finding things in common in people is an ability that has helped crafted the entire Hardee Morris McCandless campaign. After all, the slogan is “Creating Common Ground.” Connecting with students is the main objective. The connection between students is also something Hardee loves most about UT.
“My favorite thing about UT is that you have the ability to find your own community,” Hardee said. “No matter what you like, you can find other people who like it too.”
Through joining those communities, Hardee has built many relationships with students and organizations on campus, which is something she greatly values. She said she has also learned how to be more open-minded through her memorable experiences at UT.
“I honestly think it’s been really inspiring to hear from other groups,” Hardee said.
One such experience was the T ceremony for the Ignite summer program, for which Hardee was a team leader. She said that experience meant a lot to her because she go to see how much the participants had grown in just a few days.
Another notable experience Hardee has had at UT is the time an administrator walked in on her changing clothes. Hardee cites it as the funniest thing that has happened her as a student.
“I was changing clothes in the bathroom on the second floor of the old UC and an administrator just came in and saw me,” Hardee recalled with a laugh. “And she was like, ‘Oh, hey Jennings!’”
Hardee took it in stride. Her ability to laugh at that moment is evidence of the “optimism but also realism” she hopes the Hardee-Morris-McCandless imparts on campus. Hardee said while there is no one way to make all the problems go away overnight, there are ways students can work towards a better campus.
The Hardee-Morris-McCandless campaign has a lot of plans to work towards improving the campus if they are elected. Their campaign includes sexual assault prevention, creating accessibility maps for campus, crime-prevention in the Fort, issue-specific roundtables for members of SGA, regular campus dinners and creating a Mental Health week during mid-terms.
Hardee said she has also has a plan in case she loses the election.
“I said that if I lose I’m going to get a cat for the weekend to make myself feel better,” she said.
Images courtesy of the Hardee Morris McCandless Facebook page
Edited by Jessica Carr