On the campaign trail with executive candidates

AMS executive candidates participate in the vice-president of university affairs debate on Monday night as part of their campaigning.
AMS executive candidates participate in the vice-president of university affairs debate on Monday night as part of their campaigning.


Team GPP had a debate ritual this week.

“We hug before the debate, during the middle break of the debate and at the end of the debate,” said vice-presidential candidate of operations Duncan Peterson, ArtSci ’11.

Presidential candidate Rico Garcia said the team recognizes that they need to maintain a certain disposition during campaigning.

“We need to give that positivity out to people while campaigning,” Garcia, ArtSci ’13, said.

The best part about campaigning has been meeting and interacting with students, he said.

“The ultimate goal we have is not winning the election, but making student government better and making students more aware and engaged.”

Team GPP starts every morning with an 8 a.m. visit to their campus booth.

The team does their first class talk at 8:30 a.m.

Garcia said the team has worked hard to reach out to smaller classes for class talks.

“I emailed every professor in the Spanish department in Spanish and asked if we could come and do class talks,” Garcia said.

The campaigning has taken its toll on the team, said vice-presidential candidate for university affairs T.K. Pritchard.

“I wanted to create a hashtag on Twitter that would say ‘#campaignproblems’ and write about how I have no food in my house,” Pritchard, ArtSci ’12, said.

Pritchard also had to call CAA to the corner of University and Union during campaigning.

“I had used my car to blast music at the booth and killed my car battery — that was embarrassing.”

— Savoula Stylianou


Team JDL has developed their sprinting skills in the past week of campaigning.

Often running from different ends of campus to different class talks, the fast-paced nature of AMS election period is hectic, said vice-president of operations candidate Tristan Lee.

“It kind of pumps you up too,” Lee, ArtSci ’12, said. “It’s a very adrenaline-filled day.”

JDL strives to do a class talk every half hour, every day, in front of a variety of classes and years.

Lee said the 10-day AMS campaigning period is almost like leading an alternative life.

“We’re not going to classes right now. It’s literally just talking to people all day long which is so fun and it’s putting out our message,” Lee said.

Presidential candidate Doug Johnson said one of the most rewarding aspects of doing class talks is seeing student reactions.

“When one of us is speaking, we make sure that the other two are scanning the audience just to see what’re they reacting to,” Johnson, ArtSci ’12, said. “On that, we tweak our class talk a little, even based on what kind of class we’re going into to appeal to different audiences.”

The team’s mantra, “stay hungry,” has both a serious and fun aspect.

Johnson said if his two teammates aren’t eating, they’re talking about food. He added that their campaign manager, Keenan Randall, often will text message the team as a reminder for vice-presidential candidate of university affairs Mira Dineen to eat.

“He’s still directing us from his cell phone,” he said. “He’s the best.”

— Meaghan Wray


Team RMS is running their campaign and manning their booth without volunteers or a campaign manager.

“It’s been hard work but it’s worth it,” said Sean Renaud, vice-presidential candidate of university affairs. “We want students to talk directly to us. We want to show our personalities and not just necessarily push politics.”

Since last Friday the team has sat at a table at various places on campus from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The team said because they’re dedicated to being available at the booth, attending their lectures and seminars is difficult. On Wednesday Renaud missed a tutorial worth two per cent of his grade to stay at the booth while his teammates did a class talk.

Renaud said during class talks most of the time students would be polite no matter what they said.

“People even clapped when I handed out signature forms,” he said, adding that the team does about four class talks per day.

Jeffrey McCarthy said there were no practices in place to give the candidates extensions during the campaign.

Bryor Snefjella, vice-presidential candidate of operations, said his team’s campaign was led with honesty.

“We’re trying to avoid gimmicks like handing out merchandise,” Snefjella, ArtSci ’12, said. “It doesn’t make sense for us to hand out things that people will use once and then throw away. It’s not sustainable.”

— Catherine Owsik


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