At-Large Senator Candidates

Kaden Bolton

Pronouns: He/Him

Year in School: First Year

Major(s) & Minor(s): Political Science with a minor in theater

Qualifications:

  • Current Strategic Enrollment and Advisory Committee Student Representative
  • Current Tingelstad Residence Hall Council Outreach/Specialty Director
  • Former ASB President of Enumclaw High School
  • Former Campaign Fellowship Member of Dr. Kim Schrier (WA08)
  • Lived experience as a gay man

Policy Proposals:  

Diversity Policies

  • A resolution to ensure the common disclosure of pronouns in zoom meetings and classes to ensure all lutes feel comfortable in their own classrooms.
  • Requiring campus safety to notify campus of uniformed police who are visiting to ensure all lutes feel safe on campus.
  • Ensuring DJS is centered in the classroom and providing training in order to do so.

Sustainability Policies

  • Supporting Resolution 16 to achieve carbon neutrality at PLU within a few years and ensure that it is entirely implemented.
  • Implementing Student Bill 13 so that student events are waste free.
  • Enforcing reusable dishes at OMM and Kelly’s Cafe to lower on-campus waste.

COVID Related Policies

  • Protecting Students who test positive/inconclusive and ensuring they have support and good communication in that time. Also, that students who are healthy that were in the area of the infected/unknown are aware somewhat of the situation in order to be proactive.
  • Protecting and Supporting remote learning students in other timezones and with varying lifestyles. A resolution to ensure that we recognize that teachers should be flexible for the time differences of students (especially in time zones behind Washington), and that remote learning students with jobs, children, or health complications are also greeted with flexibility.
  • A resolution to declare that ASPLU and PLU will not tolerate any COVID-related racism towards Asians, Asian-Americans, or people of Asian descent.

Paradise Gladstone

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Year in School: 2024

Major(s) & Minor(s): Intended Major: Psychology, Intended Minor: Native American Indigenous Studies

Qualifications: 

  • Act Six Scholar
  • Participated in Western Washington Native Education Consortium’s NAYLA (Native American Youth Leadership Academy) for 5 years (2015-2020)
  • Participated in Na’ah Illahee Fund’s Native Girl’s Code for 5 years (2015-present)
  • Secretary of Seattle Indian Health Board’s KIIS Youth Council for 1 year (2019-2020)
  • Attended Native Action Network’s Women’s Leadership Conference in 2019
  • Attended Seattle Indian Health Board’s Youth GONA (Gathering of Native Americans) in 2018
  • A member of NAYLA Spring Conference Planning Committee for 2 years (2018-2020)
  • Attended NAYLA Spring Conference for 4 years (2017-2020)
  • Attended Native Wellness Institute’s Native American Leadership Academy in 2019 

Policy Proposals:  

  • We will take action to spread awareness and appreciation to the student employees and staff who subject themselves to the risks of social interactions during this time
  • We will push for PLU to include land acknowledgement of historical Coast Salish territories and current tribal lands within public discussion and classroom environments.
  • Unifying and creating a space for BIPOC to come together to interact and create a community during social distancing times. 
  • Develop a safe space or community for LGBTQIA+ students of color who may need extra support or resources
  • Creating a positive community dedicated to breaking toxic patterns like addiction and alcoholism (zoom/Discord educational meetings)

Olivia Tate

Pronouns:

Year in school: 2024

Major(s) & Minor(s): nursing and political science minor

Qualifications and Policy Proposals:

My name is Olivia Tate and I am a first year student majoring in nursing and minoring in political science at Pacific Lutheran University (PLU). I am from Loveland, Colorado and I enjoy hiking, attending concerts, painting, and drinking more coffee than my body can hold. Although these activities are amazing, none bring me the same fulfillment as student leadership. I was a loyal member to Mountain View High School’s Student Council for four years, and I served as Secretary, Vice President, and eventually President. As I dedicated an abundance of time to this organization, I was able to understand the importance of a student government. Representatives listen to the needs and wants of the student population, communicate to administration and faculty, and turn requests into actions that better the community. I wish to continue this passion in my college career as an At-Large Senator for the Associatied Students of Pacific Lutheran University. As an At-Large Senator, I will put forth policies that positively change the University and its community for the better. My first policy statement proposes a plan to prevent the contamination of recyclables on campus. 

The Earth’s rapidly changing climate is a significant concern for scholars and policymakers alike. Evidence of rapid climate change include shrinking ice sheets, warming oceans, ocean acidification, glacial retreats, higher sea levels, extreme weather events, and rising global temperatures. According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, the five warmest years of a 140 year record have occurred since 2015. This accelerated increase in surface temperature is attributed, in part, to human actions. In 2017, the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) of Americans was 267.8 million tons. Of this horrendous amount, 139.8 million tons were discarded into landfills and oceans. These landfills emit chemicals that harm the surrounding environment and pollute the air, causing increased temperatures. In order to combat this, governments around the world have encouraged the practice of recycling. Nearly 67 million tons of the 2017 MSW were recycled in the United States. Unfortunately, an average of 25 percent of what is recycled becomes contaminated and is unable to be reused. Recyclables are contaminated when non recyclable materials, such as food waste and nonrecyclables, are disposed of in the same bins.

Pacific Lutheran University can contribute to the sustainability of the world by adapting its recycling and contamination preventative procedures. To decrease contamination, students must be informed about proper recycling practices. An easy and effective way to source information are infographics. An infographic that depicts the types of plastics accepted in Pierce County would help students decipher which containers should be recycled or thrown into the trash. A second infographic would explain the steps of proper recycling, more specifically, how to empty, rinse, and dry containers, as well as how to dispose of lids, caps, and cardboard. Each infographic will be laminated and displayed near all recycle and trash bins. By enacting these procedures, PLU will lessen the amount of contaminated recyclables on campus, therefore contributing to the improvement of humanity’s carbon footprint on the Earth.

Keahi (Ahi) Holden

Daelin Cavanaugh

Pronouns: He/Him/His

Year in school: Freshman class of 2023

Major(s) & Minor(s): Political Science Major

Qualifications:

  • High school NJROTC company commander 1 year
  • Eagle Scout
  • Boy Scout Troop Senior Patrol Leader 1 year
  • National Youth Leadership Training staff 4 years
  • Nation Youth Leadership Training Assistant Senior Patrol Leader 2 years
  • Army ROTC Scholarship winner
  • Highschool Cross Country JV Captain
  • Highschool Track and Field Long Distance JV Captain

Policy Proposals:

I have noticed a lack of ADA compliant sidewalks and buildings on campus. Our sidewalks are cracked and unsafe for all, they could be borderline unpassable for disabled people. Some of our buildings are ADA compliant and could be easily accessible for disabled people, but other buildings could present a serious inhibitor to the disabled community. I believe everyone has the potential to succeed, and should be given the opportunity here at PLU. Our sidewalks and stairs should not hold back the next Stephen Hawking.

Suicide is far too common in America, and claims too many lives every year. It is especially disastrous in the college student, veteran, and LGBTQ+ communities. PLU is a mixing ground of these great communities, and more. As such we are at risk of losing some of our loved community members. We need to do everything we can to prevent suicide in our University and more.

I will be committed to listening and engaging in dialogue with my fellow students about topics they are passionate about. I hope to combat the above-mentioned problems and take them off my list however I am also willing to add more if need be.

Class of 2024 Senator Candidates

Zyreal Oliver-Chandler

Pronouns: He/They

Year in School: First Year

Major(s) & Minor(s): Undeclared Musical Theatre Major w/ minor in psychology and vocal music

Qualifications:

  • Follows the practices of Unitarian Universalism
    • a religion that strives to promote liberty and justice as well as worth and dignity for all
  • A part of Student Council my sophomore, junior, and senior years of high school as a club representative
    • Nation Honors Society Historian
    • Choir Club Secretary
    • Drama Club Reporter
  • Promotes DJS values in everyday life through personal reflection and social media
  • 2020-21 RHC Vice President of Hinderlie Hall
    • Manages finance and budget for RHC
    • Promotes DJS values consistently in the residence hall setting
  • Has a background in the political procedure through club meetings in high school
  • Experience with Diversity and Justice as a POC
    • Promotes POC rights through social media activism
  • Experience with Diversity and Justice as a gay individual
    • Promotes LGBTQ rights through social media activism

Policy Proposals:

  • Hold bi-weekly gatherings for first-years to get to know each other better and create established unity through Discord and Zoom
  • Collaborate with PLU Campus Life and Student Engagement to promote on-campus events that are available to first years
  • Collaborate with the PLU Class of 2024 Discord Admin to create a First-Year Community Attention Box for all first-years to be able to share their concerns or suggestions to help better the community within the Class of 2024
  • Collaborate with PLU Prism Club to help gain as many resources for LGBTQ+ first years as possible
  • Collaborate with PLU Black Student Union and dCenter to help gather as many resources for African American first years as possible
  • Collaborate with PLU Generation Action to help gather as many resources as possible to promote reproductive rights for first-years who might need them
  • Collaborate with PLU GREAN Club to help gather resources to promote sustainability within our class

Evelyn Ayala

Pronouns: She/her

Year in School: 2024

Major(s) & Minor(s): Major: Political Science Minor: Latinx Studies

Qualifications:

  • ActSix scholar
  • ALY (Advanced leadership Youth program) worked with the Federal way public school
  • district
  • Part of LSU(Latinx Student Union)
  •  Unified People: focused on unifying school clubs
  •  Worked with One American: registered voters
  •  Know your rights workshops
  •  Volunteered at a retirement center

Policy Proposals:

  •  Unifying and creating a space for BIPOC to come together and create a community
  • during social distancing times.
  •  Develop a safe space or community for LGBTQIA+ students of colors
  •  Creating a positive community dedicated to breaking toxic patterns (zoom/Discord
  • educational meetings)
  •  We will take action to spreading awareness and appreciation to the student employees and staff
  • who subject themselves to the risks of social interactions during this time

Class of 2023 Senator Candidates

Tori Ballesteros

Name: Tori Ballester

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Year in School: Sophomore, Class of 2023

Major(s) & Minor(s): Majoring in Kinesiology, with a focus on Pre-Physical Therapy

Qualifications: Though unable to run for student government in my high school days, I was able to have the opportunity to be elected president of my school’s interact club for both my junior as well as my senior year. During that time, I was in charge of finding opportunities for my club to help out the community we call home. During my junior year, we were able to organize a school-wide drive for personal hygiene products which we were able to donate to the women’s shelter down the street from my school. This past year, I was apart of Stuen’s ESJ community which allowed me to meet people who like me, wanted to seek action and ways to help better our community. I was also given the opportunity to volunteer at our local children’s hospital, Mary Bridge, for the better part of the past school year. 

Policy Proposals:

  • A more unified PLU community: Throughout my first year here at PLU, I’ve gotten to get to know many people. However, something came to my attention during the year. I have seen a divide between underclassmen and upperclassmen. Many classes have defined groups and many do stick to their class versus interacting with others. We do have seperate groups on snap or discord which are solely for each “Class of”. However, I want to change that. I would like to set up a place for every student to interact with different classes. This school year, we are all experiencing lack of socializing. Especially for first years, there’s a problem of being unable to meet new people because we don’t have activities such as clubs, IM sports, or even just classes where we would normally be able to meet new people. One discord server could be the start of many different things that we could do to unify the school as a whole. We are all going through a tough time and as someone who has trouble finding others, I think this would be a great idea to branch off with and could be built up in the following years.
  • Indigenous Peoples: As someone of an Alaskan Native background, I support less than 1% of the PLU population. As a school which is located on the lands of several tribes, all I hear about is just the acknowledgement of the lands and that’s it. I’ve seen at different colleges, especially at UW, where indigenous culture is widely celebrated. One of the proposals I would like to make is to have more of a presence of both native american as well as alaskan native culture present on campus. I would work with the Dcenter to help organize events that could be held throughout the month of November, which is designated as the National American Indian Heritage Month.

Ramon E Rafols

Pronouns: He/Him

Year in School: 2nd Year (Sophomore), Class of 2023

Major(s) & Minor(s): Major in 3-2 Engineering, Minor in Political Science

Qualifications:

  • ASPLU Senator (Spring 2020)
  • Rank & Tenure Committee Student Representative (Nominee)
  • VA Volunteer (Summer 2018)

Policy Proposals:

  • Advocate funding for projects around campus that will affect multiple groups (academic
  • & extracurricular)
  • Be a liaison between the different classes and advocate for student priorities
  • Find ways to make ASPLU more accessible to students

Class of 2022 Senator Candidates

Richard Oeun

Andre Jones

Pronouns: He/Him

Year in School : 3rd Year

Major(s) & Minor(s): Global Studies international affairs, Development & Social Justice

with a minors in hispanic studies & peace corp prep

Qualifications:

  • 2018- 2020 President of Beyond Pacific
  • 2018 – 2020 Apart of the community engagement and services community and
  • worked as a Big Buddy mentor
  • 2018 – 2020 3 year consecutive years as a member of BSU

Policy Proposals:

  • Establishing more structure and expectations for the food pantry for coming years with Miss Melanie and campus ministries, due to this difficult era of coronavirus food security within our campus is an obstacle that some students here on campus are sure to face. Partnering with our community here on campus and creating legislation to impact our students
  • Awareness for the food pantry
  • Uphold diversity and social justice policies here on campus
  • Ensure cooperation with campus clubs and unions with ASPLU to have an available action plan
  • Representation of People of Color within ethnic studies
    • Staff of color will be able to prepare their students of color when discussing systems of oppression, racism, and exclusion, as these students’ learning experiences differ from their white peers.
    • It has become apparent of the lack of professors, coaches, and faculty of color at this school, I’d propose the addition of a professor of color would be beneficial to the campus engagement and understanding within this time of unrest many non-people of color may have to get a deeper understanding of race based relations in America going back hundreds of years.

Class of 2021 Candidates

Sydney Caplinger

Pronouns:  they/theirs or she/hers

Year in School: Senior

Major(s) & Minor(s): Double Major in Global Studies & Anthropology with a Minor in Peace Corps Prep

Qualifications:

  • 2017-2019 Member of PLU in Feminist Student Union 
  • 2018- current Player on PLU REIGN Womxn (ultimate frisbee)
  • 2017-2020 Rieke Scholar in the Diversity Center 
    • Participated and helped facilitate intersectional dialogue around diversity, justice, and sustainability
    • Programming included:
      • Film showing and discussion: Makah Whaling Rights 
      • Formulating community builders 
  • 2020-21 Diversity Center Advocate 
    • Working closely with other advocates and leaders on campus to create/continue programs that celebrate intersectional identities
    • Help in hosting spaces where personal narratives are shared involving how one’s identity is perceived in the various communities.  
      • Current Programming work:
        • W.H.I.T; E
          • A 6-week course for white students and staff where accountability will be taken for the perpetuation of white supremacy culture 
        • NCAA inclusion workshop 
        • Gender and Sexuality Month
        • Weekly facilitating of virtual dCenter hours 

Policy Proposals:  

  • Ensure that Student Leaders are Paid 
    • PLU benefits highly from the work of student leaders on campus, and efficient reparations are not being met therefore to avoid the exploitation of further seeking compensation
    • These student leadership positions include but are not limited to; BIPOC clubs and organizations; student committees (e.g. PLU student presidential search committee)
    • Partner with Black Student Union and other campus clubs and students unions to secure an action plan (DJS club coalition)
    • In collaboration with Marae Tidwell 
  • Revision to PLUS year 
    • As a solution to financial distress for students, the PLU PLUS year only reliefs those students who have the resources and additional funding (room, board, transportation, material fees) to add another year. 
    • Those who are on track to graduate in the class of 2021, can find little to no relief or purpose in the PLU PLUS year
    • PLU needs to consider the job market or lack thereof that new graduates will be entering post-COVID-19 when 
  • Representation of People of Color in Ethnic Studies Courses
  • The two critical race experts employed at PLU are both white women. Although, PLU students are grateful to have this program, having solely white people teach these courses does not provide appropriate space for black, indigenous, and other people of color to critically digest race while they are consistently combatting systemic white supremacy. 
      • cited from candidate/running mate Marae Tidwell’s Policy Plan
    • In ethnic studies courses taught by white professors, students of color and white students miss out on a full understanding of the experiences of POC in those contexts. These professors cannot use personal lived experience. White professors constantly explaining others negative experiences have described as themselves as “numb,” (Race and Ethnicity)
    • POC are able to recognize “For many white people, this book [racial texts] may bring you face-to-face with issues of race and privilege that will make you uncomfortable. For many people of color, this book may bring forward some of the trauma of experiences around race that you’ve experienced,“ (Oluo, 7). 
    • Staff of color will be able to prepare their students of color when discussing systems of oppression, racism, and exclusion, as these students’ learning experiences differ from their white peers. 
    • Students in these courses with POC staff may avoid microaggressions from their professors within their classroom and maybe better represented when microaggressions or racist ideologies become present in class. This will take the weight off of the students to educate their professors and peers and rather allow the educator to be responsible for educating. 
    • Gathering student testimonies of negative or inappropriate experiences in classrooms in which ethnic studies are taught by non-ethnic people 
      • In collaboration with Sydney Caplinger, Andre Jones, BSU, and other race-based clubs
  • Representation of Students of Color is SOC spaces 
      • cited from candidate/running mate Marae Tidwell’s Policy Plan
    • Currently, our Community Director of the Diversity Center, a space intended for students of color is a person not of color who does not experience many of the inequalities our students of color are experiencing day to day. 
    • It is important to have someone of color in this director position due to our social climate: racial division, protests, uprising of racist actions, and the political climate that directly addresses racial division
    • Gathering student testimonies of less than positive experiences in the soc space the Diversity Center
    • In collaboration with Sydney Caplinger, BSU, and other race-based clubs

Marae Tidwell

Pronouns: she/hers or they/theirs

Year in School: Senior

Major(s) & Minor(s): Sociology Major with Minor in Communications & Peace Corps Prep

Qualifications:

  • 2018-2019 Sustainability Director for Residential Hall Council in Stuen Hall
  • 2019-2020 Public Relations Officer for Black Student Union
  • 2020-2021 Black Student Union President
  • 2020-2021 Access, Inclusion, and Leadership Student Engage Ambassador for Campus Life
  • 2020-2021 Campus Safety Review Board Member
  • 2020-2021 Student Candidate for the Alumni Board Annual Meeting

Policy Proposals:

  • Representation of People of Color in Ethnic Studies Courses
    • In ethnic studies courses taught by white professors, students of color and white students miss out on full understanding of the experiences of poc in those contexts. These professors cannot use personal lived experience. White professors constantly explaining others negative experiences have described as themselves as “numb,” (Race and Ethnicity)
    • In many contexts it is the case… “For many white people, this book [racial texts] may bring you face-to-face with issues of race and privilege that will make you uncomfortable. For many people of color, this book may bring forward some of the trauma of experiences around race that you’ve experienced,“ (Oluo, 7).
    • Staff of color will be able to prepare their students of color when discussing systems of oppression, racism, and exclusion, as these students’ learning experiences differ from their white peers.
    • Students in these courses with poc staff may avoid microaggressions from their professor within their classroom and may be better represented when microaggressions or racist ideologies become present in class. This will take the weight off of the students to educate their professors and peers and rather allow the educator to be responsible for educating.
    • Gathering student testimonies of negative or inappropriate experiences in classrooms in which ethnic studies are taught by non-ethnic people
    • In collaboration with Sydney Caplinger, Andre Jones, BSU, and other race-based clubs
  • Representation of Students of Color is SOC spaces
    • Currently, our Community Director of the Diversity Center, a space intended for students of color is a person not of color who does not experience many of the inequalities our students of color are experiencing day to day.
    • It is important to have someone of color in this director position due to our social climate: racial division, protests, uprising of racist actions, and the political climate that directly addresses racial division
    • Gathering student testimonies of less than positive experiences in the soc space the Diversity Center
    • In collaboration with Sydney Caplinger, BSU and other race-based clubs
  • In collaboration with Sydney Caplinger…
    • “Ensure that Student Leaders are Paid
    • PLU benefits highly from the work of student leaders on campus, and efficient reparations are not being met therefore to avoid the exploitation of further seeking compensation
    • Partner with Black Student Union and other campus clubs and students unions to secure an action plan (DJS club coalition)” (Sydney Caplinger)

Off Campus Senator Candidates

Corbin Edwards

Pronouns: he/him/his

Year in school: senior

Major(s) & Minor(s): Kinesiology with teaching certification

I’m Corbin Edwards, and I’m a senior and a commuter student excited to be running for ASPLU, off-campus position. I am studying for a Bachelors of Kinesiology degree in Health and Wellness, with teaching certification. My background includes political engagement with local politics, attending local City Council meetings and speaking on topics that are important to me. Previously, I also held the position of Treasurer with the Pierce County Young Democrats in the 2016 campaign year. 

As a new father, I recognize how important our health is in these especially trying times. Keeping our campus safe and our students healthy is my foremost priority. I believe that we can do that by keeping school representatives transparent and accountable to their student body about the measures being taken at PLU to slow the spread of COVID-19 on campus. We know that COVID-19 disproportionately affects minority and underrepresented persons, owing to factors such as discrimination, disparities of healthcare access, educational attainment gaps, and socioeconomic and housing status differences. These factors are associated with poorer outcomes, including death, long-term injury, and financial hardship. We must be thoughtful, intentional, and dedicated, as a student body, in our commitment to addressing these inequities. 

Zoom classes are not what we wanted as students, but the step was necessary. Staying virtual is vital to students’ health, and we, as a constituency, deserve representatives who will advocate for us and make sure that classroom doors are not reopened too early. If and when we resume in-person classes this year, our representatives owe it to us to make our safety their primary focus.

I would immediately undertake a campaign to have hygiene reminders posted on campus to remind students, make sure that masks are available to any and all students who need or want them (both on-campus and commuters), and create buy-in within the community to take on coronavirus. Further, I would support and hold staff accountable to their responsibility to adhere to all guidelines suggested by the Washington State Department of Health.

Together we can do have a great year! PLU needs representatives who are motivated, who care about you, and who want to serve. That’s me. Please vote for me, Corbin Edwards, for ASPLU off-campus councilor.