Meeting the future
It has been a week and a half since Maxon Victor and Sameer Ahmed were elected student body president and vice president.
Neither of them crept out of the woodwork. Both have been extremely active in their years at USF.
Victor is in his third year at USF and is a communications major. He is in his fifth semester of Student Government senate and has been the Florida Student Association (FSA) liaison for two semesters. He has also participated in the Student Resource Agency, Volunteer USF, Hip Hop Outreach and the Caribbean Cultural Exchange.
Victor first got involved in SG to get a better understanding of what was going on around him.
“I had too many questions and not enough answers,” Victor said. “I believe strongly in that you can sit down and complain about something all you want. If I don’t get up out of my seat and actually do something about it, though, I don’t have the right to complain.”
Ahmed is a pre-med student also in his third year at USF. He has been in the SG senate for three semesters, and in that time, has worked on the Budget Committee and the Activity and Service Recommendation Committee. He has also participated in the Muslim Student Association, the Pakistan Student Association and the Students of India Association.
Victor left for Atlanta following the election to spend his Spring Break being a team site leader for community service projects in house development for the elderly as a part of Volunteer USF.
Even though he spent the majority of the break in Georgia with Volunteer USF, Victor said he has dealt with and met with various people already in preparation for next year.
“The phone calls haven’t stopped,” Victor said. “I’ve already been contacted by several leaders in the community as well as several faculty and staff members.”
Victor and Ahmed have also started working with the current student body President and Vice President, Bijal Chhadva and Andrew Aubery.
“I met with them Thursday and Friday (before Spring Break),” Chhadva said. He also said that he would be spending the next six weeks getting them acclimated and making sure they are totally ready when they take office.
“Andrew Aubery has been instrumental in helping me to transition and keep the learning curve to a minimum,” Ahmed said.
Work has already begun on forming a new Cabinet. Part of their campaign, according to their flyers, was a reorganization of the Cabinet.
“We have researched different Cabinet needs,” Ahmed said. “We have (also) started to formulate positions for students to apply for.”
Ahmed has already made a trip to Tallahassee as the student body vice president elect.
“I recently was granted the opportunity to go to Tallahassee to elect the new Florida Student Association director to represent USF at the capital,” Ahmed said.
They also aren’t forgetting about some of the students they ran against. Ahmed said they are keeping in touch with some of their opponents — including Mike Johnson, Kyle Myers and Silverlee Hernandez — on various issues.
A big goal for Victor and Ahmed is just getting students involved and making them take notice of SG and what is going on at USF.
“Going down the campaign trail, we noticed there were so many student groups who wanted to do more, but they weren’t granted the opportunity,” Victor said. He said he wants to make sure that those student groups get the tools they need to do more.
“It’s not a one-man show or a two-man show between me and Sameer,” he said. “It’s going to be an effort by all students.”
Ahmed said that he wants to use the new SG marketing department.
“Next year it (the new SG marketing department) is going to be full payroll, fully staffed and fully functional,” Ahmed said. “I really hope we capitalize on that — we could really go very far with that.”
Overall, Ahmed had a straightforward view for their upcoming year in office.
Ahmed said that his top priority for the upcoming year in office is “accountability.”
“I want the students to know it wasn’t false promises that we got into office on,” Ahmed said. “Hopefully we will be able to … accomplish all the goals we set out to accomplish.”
Next year’s SG will be inaugurated on April 18 at Traditions Hall.