The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU students gather around a bucket of markers to write an encouraging note to put in “Welcome to the Shelter” kits at event in mid-April on SMU’s campus.
Dallas homeless recovery center, The Bridge, is a home
Morgan Shiver, Contributor • June 20, 2024
Instagram

Senate structure, student belonging among things student senate candidates hope to address

Photo+credit%3A+SMU+Student+Senate
Photo credit: SMU Student Senate

The 110th SMU Student Senate elections are underway. Reshaping SMU’s campus environment to make it more inclusive is among the top initiatives for SMU Student Body president candidates.

Student body officer candidates will debate tonight at 7 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Auditorium. Alex Alarcon, Hope Heiden and Tulsi Lohani are the candidates running for student body president.

Alarcon is a junior majoring in history and political science. He currently holds a position as the vice president of student senate. His main initiative if he is elected focuses on restructuring student senate.

“I believe that the structure of Senate is old and outdated, and that’s what’s preventing our senators from accomplishing more things, and truly working on what students really care about,” Alarcon said.

Alex Alarcon, Student Body President candidate, is a junior majoring in history and political science.
Alex Alarcon, student body president candidate (Photo credit: Sara Hummadi)

Another initiative Alarcon plans to address is parking by working to install sensors in parking garages to alert students about how many spots are left. He also plans to increase scholarships for transfer students and expand funding for textbooks.

Students and faculty need a better way to reach their representatives, said Tulsi Lohani, a sophomore majoring in political communication and journalism who is also seeking the president’s post.

He plans to launch “MeetSMU,” a platform that will allow students and faculty to reach student senators or executive members to address their issues. He also plans to nominate at least 25 student directors to navigate this.

Tulsi Lohani, student body president candidate
Tulsi Lohani, student body president candidate (Photo credit: Sara Hummadi)

When I was thinking about these past two years at SMU and my next two years,” said Lohani, the senate’s current parliamentarian. I realized that the narrative in senate needs to change.”

Freshman students need a better sense of belonging on SMU’s campus, said Hope Heiden, a junior majoring in political science and international relations. She plans to create a committee that focuses on students as they enter SMU. Heiden draws from personal experiences with this initiative.

Hope Heiden, student body president candidate
Hope Heiden, student body president candidate (Photo credit: Sara Hummadi)

“When I first got here, I felt out of touch with the university,” Heiden said. “It was hard for me to get involved right away.”

There will be a meet and greet with candidates tonight at 6:30 p.m. prior to the debate. Elections will be held on April 5 at 9 a.m. through April 6 at noon. Students can vote on Connect.

Full list of candidates:

President:

  • Alex Alarcon
  • Hope Heiden
  • Tulsi Lohani

Vice President:

  • Faith Bombito
  • Joey Grey
  • Krish Madhura

Treasurer:

  • Clayton Meyer
  • Mir Shah

Secretary:

  • Dylan Caputo
  • Michael Castle

Featured photo contributed by SMU Student Senate.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Sara Hummadi
Sara Hummadi, Video Editor
As video editor, Sara works with the social media editor to develop video content for The Daily Campus. She works with the newsroom to develop a "Question of the Week," relevant to SMU students, which helps us get to know our community a lot better. Sara was previously news editor of The Daily Campus in fall 2023 and works as a digital news intern at NBC Channel 5 in Dallas.