Students and community members joined in Monday evening to hear William Reinert and Liza Lowder answer questions submitted by the undergraduate student body. The town hall allowed William and Liza to emphasize their dedication to student voice and student concerns.
“What is your favorite Clemson tradition?"
William shared that he grew up right down the road in Anderson, S.C., and every year his family would come to Clemson to see the homecoming floats and attend Tigerama. William first got involved with CUSG as a student through the Miss Homecoming Pageant and serving on the Homecoming Committee. Liza said that the Ring Ceremony is her favorite Clemson tradition, especially because she serves on the Student Alumni Council.
“What do you think the student body needs?”
Liza said that she and William do not view the positions of Student Body President and Vice President as titles or awards. They would seek to echo the voices and concerns of the student body rather than to elevate themselves.
“How are you going to actively be intersectional and diverse in your leadership?”
William answered that they would continue the precedent their campaign has set of including voices from across campus through survey feedback. William described establishing a new standard or culture within CUSG that prioritizes diversity and inclusion for all Clemson students.
“How will you use your term to increase the visibility, resources and empowerment of LGBTQIA+ students?”
William answered that he and Liza would focus on building off of the momentum set forth by the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Strategy Plan for CUSG. He also emphasized the importance of listening as a leader and engaging in intentional conversations to understand the needs and desires of fellow students.
“How will you support marginalized communities on campus such as people of color?”
William gave the following three points from their platform: 1) increase minority organization funding; 2) establish inclusion and equity training for all student organizations that receive funding from the Student Funding Board; and 3) work to establish more safe forums on campus for conversations about social injustice and diversity and equity.
“How will you work to reduce the amount of violence and sexual assault on campus and how will you adapt to the changing needs and circumstances of the student body when COVID-19 is under control?”
Both William and Liza emphasized their commitment to student feedback, constant conversations and listening to students already working for change.
“Do you support the initiative for a tuition freeze? If so, how will you support it?”
Liza replied, “The reality is that a consistent tuition increase is a negative thing for our university and its students right now. We want to ensure that this university is as financially accessible to all current students and possible future students, and we believe that increasing tuition, especially right now during some really hard times, makes it less accessible, so we do support a freeze in tuition.”
At the end of the event, the candidates were asked to identify the most important project or goal they want to implement if elected. William said he is focused on inclusion and equity training for student organizations and restoring Clemson spirit after COVID-19. Liza emphasized her focus on mental health services and accessibility for all Clemson students through well-being checks, outsourcing resources and expanding CAPS services.
Be sure to vote on Wednesday, March 3 through Tiger Quest between 12:00 a.m. and 11:59 p.m.