For his first time running for a Student Government Senate seat, Michael McAllister’s chose to interview with the new Challenge Party.
McAllister, a UF computer engineering freshman, was the only student who interviewed with the party Sunday.
He said he considered running with Inspire, but when Challenge started last Friday, he saw a group of leaders who wanted to make Student Government more diverse and acceptable.
“Seeing Janae’s courage to speak out and voice the truth about Student Government knowing all the backlash she’d receive, it showed me she was really committed to improving the lives of students and that really made me want to slate with Challenge,” the 18-year-old said.
On the first day where students could interview with SG parties for Senate seats representing UF’s colleges, 41 students interviewed, Erica Baker, the supervisor of elections, wrote in an email. One student interviewed with Challenge Party, eight students interviewed with Impact Party and 32 students interviewed with Inspire Party. No independent students registered.
In Fall 2017, 139 students interviewed on the first day, with 96 students interviewing with Impact Party and 43 students interviewing with Inspire Party, according to Alligator archives.
In Spring 2017, about 45 students interviewed on the first day, all with Impact Party, according to Alligator archives.
After transferring from Valencia College last semester, Aanchel Shah, a UF political science junior who is running for a College of Liberal Arts and Sciences seat with Inspire Party, said she wants to advocate for transfer students.
“I feel like transfer students are often neglected by the campus as a whole,” the 21-year-old said. “People that are in Senate tend to be traditional four-year students, so it’s easy to look over experiences that don’t affect them.”
Andrea Rangel, a UF nursing sophomore and a current Impact freshman senator, said she’s looking to be a part of Senate again by running for a sophomore seat.
Rangel, 19, said she’s running with the party again because she enjoyed her past term.
“I feel that there’s so much tangible change that could be done with Impact,” she said. “I want to move forward and see what we could really bring this semester.”