The Nominations & Elections Committee is holding a special election to fill a vacant Wharton representative seat on the Undergraduate Assembly.
The seat has been open since the end of the fall semester when Wharton senior Nile Nwogu resigned, UA Speaker and College junior Brian Goldstein said. UA members say that a student vacating their position is a typical occurrence that is not out of the ordinary.
“It’s just a common thing at Penn where you sign up for too many activities and you feel like you can’t handle everything," UA Communications Director and Wharton sophomore Sravya Alla said.
Online voting for the election will close this afternoon at 5 p.m. Only Wharton sophomores, juniors, and seniors are eligible to run for the seat and to vote in the election. The elected representative will serve until the entire UA is up for election later in the spring.
Alla said after Nwogu's resignation, one out of the four total Wharton representative UA seats were unfilled. Alla, who is one of the Wharton representatives, said these members work on school-wide projects, but typically focus on Wharton-specific issues.
In hopes of filling the vacant seat, two Wharton sophomores have formally declared their candidacies: John Casey and Chris Cherian.
Casey currently serves as an associate member of the UA. He said he hopes to make more progress with issues such as club recruitment and on-campus recruiting reform. He also wants to revisit the controversy surrounding Huntsman Hall closing at 2 a.m. and see how this is currently affecting students after a full semester with the new policy in place.
“The reason I’m running is because I’m working on projects within the UA, and I think the best way to get those projects I’m working on completed is by taking this next step and being a full member,” Casey said.
Chris Cherian is running to tackle several specific issues, including rainwater flooding on Locust Walk and the high demand for Computer and Information Science classes.
“I’m really passionate about spending a lot of time researching how fixing a problem can save money,” Cherian said. He hopes to “deep dive into one or two issues” so he can assess their feasibility and complete them before the seat is up for election again in the spring.
Additional candidates may still launch a write-in campaign, NEC Vice Chair for Elections and College sophomore Kiley Marron said, adding that write-in candidates must secure 42 write-in votes to be on the ballot.
Results from the election are expected to be announced 8 p.m. on Wednesday evening, Marron said.
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