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Bridge OHIO launches uncontested platform for Student Senate administration

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These three candidates will almost certainly be elected. Here’s what they intend to do in office.

Bridge OHIO will run an uncontested campaign for next year’s Student Senate administration.

Senate Chief Justice Walter Milhoan confirmed Monday night that the registration deadline for a senate ticket has passed, making Bridge the only ticket on the ballot.

The Senate Judicial Panel held its first of five town halls Monday night for the unopposed executive ticket on the 2018-2019 senate election ballot. Here’s a breakdown of the team that runs unchallenged.

Who is on the Bridge OHIO ticket?

The presidential candidate on the Bridge OHIO ticket is Maddie Sloat. Sloat is a junior studying communications in the Honors Tutorial College. She currently serves as an East Green Senator for Student Senate.

Sloat founded The Period Project, a student organization that created the “Take a Tampon, Leave a Tampon” initiative that made Ohio University the first public university in the state to provide feminine hygiene products for students.

Hannah Burke is the Bridge OHIO vice presidential candidate. Burke is a junior studying political science. She currently serves as the Women’s Affairs Commissioner for Student Senate and is a member of the College Democrats.

Running for treasurer is Lydia Ramlo, a junior studying Civil Engineering and Environmental Studies in the Honors Tutorial College. She is the current Environmental Affairs Commissioner for Student Senate.

What does Bridge OHIO mean?

“Bridge OHIO is exactly how it sounds in that we are genuinely trying to bridge the gap between the student body and our administrators and also increase collaboration between student organizations,” Sloat said.

Sloat wants the senate to serve as a mouthpiece to help students better understand resources available to help them bring their ideas to fruition.

“We envision senate to be a resource for students so they can actually conceptualize how they can bring those things to help,” she said.

What are Bridge OHIO’s initiatives?

Bridge OHIO has ten platform points: diversity and inclusion, sustainability, campus safety, sexual misconduct prevention, community and civic engagement, collaboration between organizations, shared governance, improved academic success, visibility and global vision and engagement.

Following President Duane Nellis’ Shared-Governance initiative, the ticket said it will push for transparency, visibility and more student voices to humanize Student Senate.  

“We want to be seen as students first and our position second,” Burke said.

The ticket supports current Student Senate President Landen Lama’s decision to vote against tuition increases and will vote against any increases unless they ensure “tangible change,” Burke said.

Safety is a top priority for Bridge OHIO. The ticket said it wants to increase lighting on campus, as well as introduce a new topic for the annual Scripps Innovation Challenge asking students to develop a safety app for Ohio U.

“We want students to feel a little bit more safe walking home from their 9 p.m. meetings and classes,” Burke said.

Bridge OHIO also advocates for gender-neutral housing and building environmentally sustainable and friendly housing. Sloat said she wants to have increased Autism training for residence life staff and increased support for mental health resources.

The ticket also values diversity and wants to work to make the academic calendar more inclusive to important religious holidays.

“We’re really supposed to be this inclusive Bobcat family, so we’re really trying to promote that,” Ramlo said.

What other tickets are on the ballot?

Bridge OHIO may be running unopposed, but the ticket does not want that to deter students from voting this election season.

Sloat said casting a vote and talking with candidates is important in building connections with students who will hopefully work with Student Senate in the future.

“We want students to feel like they are investing in their representatives and feel like those representatives are actually going to be representing them,” she said.

Senate elections will be held online April 3 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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