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  • Collegian staff

Meet the candidates for ASWU Senate

Voting for ASWU president and senate opens Thursday, April 16 at 8 a.m. and closes Friday, April 17 at 5 p.m. The Collegian has not edited the candidates’ bios.

CLASS OF 2023:

Oliver Kushen

Hello class of 2023, I am once again asking for your support in my campaign for student senate. In these trying times I see the commitment to equity throughout the Willamette community as one of the most important issues. To that end, I hope everyone is either safe at home or on campus and doing what is best to protect themselves and the ones they love. Although I have only been a member of student senate for a short time, I have been able to address various issues. One of which was the sustainability awareness poster campaign where myself, among the other 2023 senators, were able to spread awareness about sustainability. Currently I am in the process of working on a proposal for a restructuring of ASWU that will hopefully allow for better representation throughout the student body. My number one goal continues to be the idea that everyones voices are heard, so if you have any questions feel free to reach out to me @oliverkushen on Instagram. Thank you and I am looking forward to serving the you all further!

Andrea Griffin

Hello class of 2023! I’m Andrea Griffin, and I’m running for 2023 Senate. As a candidate and a Bearcat, I want to provide the best support for all Willamette students. This means taking a hard look at the issues on campus that need to be addressed and fostering good communication between ASWU representatives and Willamette students. I want to ensure all students feel empowered to voice their concerns and take an active role in their community. I love being a Willamette student because of the quality discussions that take place, the ability to get involved in a variety of things, and the supportive community of faculty and peers. I have experience in leadership positions such as Editor-in-Chief of my high school magazine and Senior Class President. I am currently involved with the Collegian, the debate team, cross country and track team. I’m from Eugene, Oregon and I love to paint, ride horses and go on trail runs. If you have any concerns or questions, feel free to reach out <aegriffin>!

Gretchen Jacobs

Hi Bearcats! I’m Gretchen Jacobs and I am so excited to be running for ASWU Senator and representing the class of 2023. I have worked with many different student organizations that have helped me to gain vital leadership skills that are necessary for this role. I was a senior class officer in highschool so I am familiar with working with large groups of students. I also lead my community’s Teen Council where we worked with City Council to pass a bag ordinance that banned single use plastic bags. Through these experiences I learned what it means to advocate for students, and the good of the community. I am personable and easy to approach. I look forward to addressing all of your concerns and communicating solutions. I plan to focus on sustainability, mental health and accessibility to resources on campus. If elected I would work to promote student wellbeing to create an atmosphere where you are able to succeed and thrive at Willamette University. If you have any questions about my plan of action please don’t hesitate to email me at ​​ Voting starts on April 16th at 8am, and remember to vote Gretchen for ASWU Senate.

Joshua Perez

Hello, my name is Joshua Perez and I am running for a seat in the ASWU Senate​ ​as part of the 2023 class. In my short time at Willamette, I have seen many instances in which voices in our community from underrepresented groups have been silenced. Those issues on campus have come to my mind and I want to make a difference. As part of the ASWU Senate I hope to work for those groups. Ensuring that their issues and voices are heard. Not only as a suggestion, but as a real opportunity to make a difference. I will strive to make progress that will not be later torn down. One issue that has been apparent to me is the lack of representation across campus. The University has created resources to promote the safety and well being of those in underrepresented communities, but that is simply not enough. I hope to further promote the efforts, and allocate more funds to these programs to enhance those resources. Thank you for your time, and I hope I can represent the class of 2023 in the ASWU Senate.


Morgan Yamane

Hi Class of 2022, My name is Morgan Yamane. I am an Exercise and Health Science Major, and I’m on the women’s basketball team here at Willamette. I was a class representative for three years in high school, and would love to represent my class at Willamette as a senator.


Mary Robichaeux

Hello Bearcats! My name is Mary Robicheaux and I’m running for Class of 2021 ASWU Senator! From my time as a senator this school year, I have worked on one main campus improvement project (COVID-19 got in the way of projects this semester) and served on two university committees. This experience has equipped me to be a more productive senator next year and I am excited to continue to serve as an advocate for the student body. I hope to fulfill students’ needs expressed in last semester’s survey by working on projects involving mental health, diversity and inclusion, or fixing the blue emergency poles. Vote for me, Mary Robicheaux, as a Class of 2021 Senator between April 16th and April 17th!

Gregory Gandy

I am an economics major with minors in computer science and math, and I am running for ASWU because I believe that I could provide valuable insights and perspectives to the attention of ASWU. Outside of the classroom, I have worked with various organizations on campus. I have worked for CSL, TIUA, the Office of Advancement, Academic Support, and Opening Days. In terms of extracurricular, I am the President-Elect of Willamette’s Catholic Newman Club and have enjoyed participating in CSL opportunities, intramural sports, and Outdoor Program events. In my spare time, I enjoy writing about investing, reading fiction, and running around Bush Park or Minto Brown Island Park. As one of your ASWU representatives, I will do my best to support the student experience at Willamette University. I particularly want to focus on fostering constructive dialogue and advocating for more transparency among university stakeholders. I believe that university stakeholders have a lot to gain from more openness and cordial relationships. Thank you for reading this and considering to vote for me. Have a great rest of your day!

Kristin Jradi

My name is Kristin Jradi, I use she/her/hers pronouns, and I am running as an incumbent ASWU Senator for the Class of 2021! I am grateful to have represented the Class of 2021 this semester, and hope to continue serving our student body next year. I am dedicated to representing all students, building active transparency, and creating robust communication between students and the administration. Through serving on CAFES, I know that there are vast and essential student needs that still need to be met. If elected, I will work to expand student emergency resources and create a greater sense of community between Willamette students. Please feel free to reach out <kjradi> with any questions!

Kaizen Betts-LaCroix

Hi folks, I’m Kaizen. I’ve been one of your incumbent ASWU senators for the past two years. It would be pretty nifty if you voted for me!

Zoe Chittick

I’m Zoe Chittick and I am excited to be running for ASWU Senate, representing the class of 2021! I am a History major and Spanish minor, an Opening Days leader, and a student employee at the Hatfield Library and it is my intent to represent all of the unique voices of our class. Considering our current circumstances, student support is more important than ever. If elected, I will work to improve our methods of virtual connection, in the off-chance that distance-learning is extended. Assuming that we will all be together again in the Fall, I will use my position to improve community-building on campus. The system of hearths allows for such a connection and I would like to see that strengthened across departments. The potential for growth and learning that the hearths hold is immense and I wish to increase the community-building support of the Humanities departments at Willamette University by bringing the social science hearths up to par with our amazing STEM hearths. In line with my goal to represent our entire class, I will proactively share ideas and seek feedback from y’all in order to strengthen our unique connection within the Bearcat community.

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