Advocacy.

During the campaign, I've talked a lot about how I want to expand SGA into an organization based in advocacy. I'd like to take this time to talk about what I mean by that.

According to SGA's constitution, the preamble states:

We, the full-time undergraduate students of Gannon University, serving as the official voice and administrative unit, desiring to advance the student intellectually, to augment his/her education, to foster a spirit of friendship and companionship among members of the student body, faculty, and administration, and so to do better in the name of this institution of higher learning, do establish this Constitution for the Student Government Association of Gannon University.

SGA is "the official voice and administrative unit" of the students here at Gannon. If elected, I want to utilize SGA's position as the "official voice" to negotiate respectfully with the administration. For too long SGA has been an organization defined by club/organization funding...and that's something I intend to change.

As President, I would have no problem sitting down at a table with Dr. Taylor, the Bishop, or the Board of Trustees and letting them know exactly your needs and desires. SGA must be respectful, but firm.

Many times, when talking to students about running for SGA, I get asked the question "Why would you even bother running?" Not only does this question bother me, it proves that SGA has an image problem. Too many students think that SGA is pointless at best and inept at worst. I know that SGA has the potential to accomplish great things - if given the chance.

I've been a leader for years. I've worked with local elected officials, businesses, and students. If elected to the Presidency, I would know exactly what needs to be done to make sure that your needs are being addressed.

I want to build off of the foundation that President Luke King has established, and make SGA a place to come if you have a problem. If I'm elected as President, that means that I'm literally the employee of the students. I'll work for you. I intend to treat the office with the respect and seriousness it deserves. I won't waste your money.

The debate is on Thursday, and I would encourage everyone to attend if possible. The free exchange of ideas is a beautiful thing, and I look forward to comparing and contrasting myself with the other two candidates. I'm not afraid to let you know exactly what I believe in. This debate will give you insight into how I can advocate for YOU if elected.

As always, feel free to contact me with any question. Find me on Twitter (@MichaelJHaas) or email me at haas009@knights.gannon.edu.

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