Dylan Lewandowski, sophomore business administration and marketing major, won the president pro tempore election at Wednesday’s Student Government Association (SGA) meeting.
Previously, Lewandowski unsuccessfully ran as the vice presidential candidate for the Aureum slate in the recently-concluded SGA executive slate elections.
Apart from him, three other senators ran for the position — James Schwer, Hugo Madrigal and Miryam Bevelle. Schwer and Lewandowski tied with 12 votes each, with SGA vice president Cameron DeBlasio delivering the tiebreaking vote for Lewandowski.
Lewandowski said he has “a great, close relationship with all of [the candidates] and a lot of respect for them.”
As the senators made their case for the position, all four candidates presented ideas to make SGA meetings more accessible for senators with disabilities. Lewandowski said he would print out materials presented in senate meetings, including guest speaker presentations to accommodate visual and hearing impairments.
According to SGA's bylaws, the following are the duties of a president pro tempore:
- Elected by the Student Senate from its voting membership
- Presides at all Student Senate meetings in the absence of the President of the Student Senate
- Serves on the Agenda Committee
- Serves on the Executive Council as an ex-officio, non-voting member
- Member of the University Senate who serves on the Agenda Committee of that body
- Makes Committee assignments for the Student Senate
- Responsible for the orientation of new senators and for the assistance of all senators throughout their terms
- Directs all appropriate legislation passed by the Student Senate to the University Senate
- Serves as a Student Senate representative to Campus Council
- Serves on the Rules and Constitution Committee as Chair in the absence of the Parliamentarian
“I would also love to get some Braille iClickers because it’s kind of embarrassing if we can’t always accommodate,” Lewandowski said. “It’s just not a great feeling.”
He said his experience as a University Senate representative will help him edit SGA legislation to clarify senate goals with University senators.
“My experience in University Senate has taught me that the student population and the faculty population are two different worlds sometimes,” he said. “I will be able to better present legislation and help them understand the broader big picture of what we are trying to accomplish.”
He said he will talk with each new senator as president pro tempore to ensure new senators understand the basics about the work SGA does.
“There’s really three overarching objectives for the role of president pro tempore: You maintain senate materials, advocate for legislation in the University Senate and you train new senators,” Lewandowski said.
After a senator is inaugurated into the senate, Lewandowski said, he will explain how legislation is introduced and later how elections work.
“Our bylaws are a mountain of paperwork, and usually, that’s what someone is handed, and it’s like drinking water from a firehose,” he said. “I’m going to give them one piece of paper with basic information on it.”
Working together with the newly-elected Bold slate, Lewandowski said he has “faith that they will be very successful this coming year.”
Lewandowski said before moving into the position, he will meet with the current Elevate executive board.
“I want to make sure I have a full understanding of what they did that works [and] what they did that they think they can improve on,” he said.
Also in Wednesday’s meeting, a budget request for $60 worth of cookies and soft drinks for an upcoming roommate matching event for off-campus students was approved 36-0.
The senate did not hold caucus or committee meetings, and no new legislation was introduced.
Contact Grace McCormick with comments at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @graceMc564.