The past year for the Student Government Association has been one highlighted with corruption, leading to seven SGA officials, including the president, resigning. In determining the candidate most deserving of The Crimson White’s endorsement, we considered which candidate could best pull the SGA out of their lowest point of perception yet.
David Wilson’s charismatic personality provides the SGA with the energetic force needed to pull them out of their current rut of deception between students and their government. His genuine desire to serve the student body is apparent in his current and past interaction with the University of Alabama campus.
Wilson’s plans to further develop the freshman experience in order to improve the overall student experience are insightful ideas and should be put into action. They introduce long-term solutions for helping students get more involved in campus life and understanding perspectives different from their own. Also, with focusing on the initial experience at the University, Wilson also pledged to improve students’ job potential after leaving Alabama. Just as students need to be “plugged in,” Wilson said, they should be “plugged out,” as well. His platform focuses on all four years of student experience, and provides actual ideas to improving campus life, such as reviewing the plus/minus system and reforming student organization seating.
Wilson has lived in Tuscaloosa for his twenty years of life, making his Tuscaloosa connections deep-rooted and genuine. His passion for the UA campus and its students is equal to his love for the town the University resides in. Moreover, his relationships with UA administrators are strong, which is critical for developing an efficient and impactful student government.
Matt Calderone and Shea Stripling, Wilson’s opponents, also run on solid platforms based on strong ideas. Calderone’s relationships with Tuscaloosa city officials and his experience with tornado relief are impressive; Stripling’s relationships with various UA student organizations and her understanding of the variety of students on the University of Alabama campus make her a fair representation of the student body. Both candidates have skills and resources that make them a necessity to have in SGA, and no matter the victor, each of the three presidential candidates should be incorporated into the student government staff next year.
Yet, it is Wilson’s charismatic personality, his specific platform of improving the student experience and his relationships with city and campus leaders that make him the most well-rounded and valuable candidate for SGA president. Wilson’s energy and magnetism are likely to bring an energy to student government that has been lacking recently, and he has the capability of getting students involved not only in SGA but in many aspects of campus life.
Wilson has the greatest potential to resolve the current relationship between University of Alabama students and University of Alabama SGA. After such a year of turmoil between student and student government, trust must be reconciled to move forward; Wilson has the ability to restore such trust.
Our View is the consensus of The Crimson White editorial board. Assistant managing editor Will Tucker and photo editor Drew Hoover did not participate in the endorsement of David Wilson.