Student Government Association tickets: Eleanor Hanson and Adriana Salgado
Genevieve Coleman | Wednesday, March 10, 2021
Juniors Eleanor Hanson and Adriana Salgado want Belles to know they will listen to diverse voices on campus if elected student body president and vice president, respectively.
“Leadership is about listening and elevat[ing] all voices so every individual feels heard and respected,” they said in their platform.
The pair is one of three tickets running for Student Government Association (SGA) president and vice president in the 2021 election cycle.
Hanson, a communications studies major with minors in political science and PR and advertising, is from Atlanta, Georgia. On campus, she is a student ambassador and co-chair of SGA’s social concerns committee.
Salgado is also a communications studies major with a minor in PR and advertising. Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana, she currently serves as co-chair of SGA’s campus inclusivity committee.
Hanson noted that having trouble meeting new people during her first year motivated her to connect with students struggling to find their place on campus.
“I think this experience has led me to want to make a difference in incoming freshmen’s lives and the current students at Saint Mary’s,” she said. “Especially this past year has been so trying, on everybody, I felt like it was time I took a step in my leadership and spoke out for myself and a lot of the girls at Saint Mary’s.”
Salgado also wants to reach out to students so the College feels more inclusive.
“I’ve heard a lot of stories from a lot of students and if I can do anything do as vice president to make their time at Saint Mary’s easier and make Saint Mary’s feel more like home,” Salgado said. “… I think Elly and I can make a really really big difference in improving some students’ experiences at Saint Mary’s and just making them feel more comfortable and more listened to and respected.“
If elected, Hanson and Salgado would make it a priority to find out what students would like to see done during their term.
“Our primary mission is getting to understand what everyone at Saint Mary’s wants,“ Hanson said. “We decided we were going to come from an approach where we wanted all voices integrated, so we do have an idea of what to do at Saint Mary’s, but we do want to get a feel for the women at Saint Mary’s want to see on campus.“
To gauge student interests, Hanson and Salgado emphasized that they would email class surveys to Belles.
Hanson and Salgado also want to create more mentorship opportunities for students of diverse backgrounds.
“We pushing for mentorship programs for first generations students, students with disabilities and really any student that [is] seeking out someone to guide them through college,“ Salgado said. “That’s one of the most realistic things we can do, if not the thing we’ll get started as soon as possible.“
Wanting to advocate for all student populations, Salgado spoke about the need to reach out to students learning remotely during the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, she discussed providing more services for students with disabilities on campus.
“We’re really pushing for more sensory rooms for students on the spectrum and for mentorship programs for them, so that way they feel more comfortable in the learning environment and they have someone to seek out when they’re feeling a little overwhelmed,“ she said.
Hanson noted that the pair are willing to have difficult conversations with the administration if it means getting things done.
“Because we are demanding to see more change at Saint Mary’s with our students, we have to have a very close relationship with the administration and that would involve them including us in all the conversations and having the uncomfortable conversations that might not always align with the Saint Mary’s mission,“ Hanson said.
Salgado also mentioned using Dr. Redgina Hill, executive director of inclusion and equity, as a resource during their term.
Another important aspect of Hanson and Salgado’s campaign is sustainability. They propose new recycling bins on every floor of each residence hall and the proper disposal of hard-to-recycle single-use items to promote a more sustainable campus.
“Having bins for people to put in their shampoo bottles that they are done using instead of just throwing them away — having them in a recycling bin,“ Salgado said. “Again, have someone clean it out to make sure there isn’t any debris left or any product still in there and just kind of being more mindful that there are little things we can do like that to create a more sustainable campus.“
Hanson and Salgado hope that conversations they will host about female empowerment help students feel like they can be themselves in college.
“I think being in college is really scary for a lot of people, and a lot of people don’t know if they can be themselves,“ Salgado said. “I think one of the things we’re kind of pushing for is just be yourself to the fullest extent.“