Editorial: Daron Woods for 2018-2019 A.S. VP of Campus Affairs

Photo courtesy of EMPOWER slate.

Daron Woods is the current Transfer Senator at UCSD and has served in three positions at San Diego City College—as Campus Wide Senator, Senate Vice President, and President. As someone who has long served campus communities, Woods understands how difficult it is to enter student government and hit the ground running.

To help improve AS Senate retention, Woods plans to create a system for training senators, including socials, retreats, and regular workshops, to clearly define the expectations associated with the role and build a cohesive team. He recalls his first quarter as a senator and how difficult it was to navigate the new forms and responsibilities without any templates or guidance. He also plans to create an institutional database so that new senators can see the work of their predecessors. These are important steps to break the recent trend of senators resignations within ASUCSD..

Additionally, he also plans to create a system of incentives and penalties. Senators are currently only paid a weekly $20 stipend, making other campus jobs much more appealing given the time commitment associated with the position. For senators who fail to complete their duties, such as those who are chronically absent or who fail to turn in reports, he wants to start by revoking senator privileges. If senators continue to neglect their responsibilities, Woods hopes to implement a probation period, and at last resort, commence the impeachment process. However, Woods believes that these incentives and penalties are only fair if the training for senators is improved first.

In terms of the relations between ASUCSD and the general student body, Woods supports making AS communications and documents open to the public to improve transparency.

Woods’s key areas of focus besides senator retention and transparency include student mental health and improving campus life. Woods intends to alleviate UCSD’s stressful culture by hosting more social events to help students be a part of the larger San Diego community, rather than just UCSD or even La Jolla. He also intends to create a Transfer Resource Center to ease the transfer process. While these notable suggestions indicate Woods’ open-mindedness in transforming UCSD campus life, we hope he also advocates for increased resources for student mental health resources, such as CAPS.

All in all, we believe Woods exhibits the compassion and commitment necessary to improve the experience of transfer students and other student minorities at UCSD as Vice President of Campus Affairs.

Read our main endorsement of the 2018-19 elections here.

Editor’s Note: A previous version of the article was not tagged as an editorial. The title has been updated for transparency and clarity.