2020-2021 Elections

The results of the 2020-2021 election are in and have been certified by SA Congress! Please join us in congratulating the new SA E-Board and Binghamton University Council Representative members below:

President: Khaleel James
Executive Vice President: Maggie Koekkoek
Vice President for Finance: Jacob Eckhaus
Vice President for Academic Affairs: Joshua Dorfman
Vice President for Multicultural Affairs: David Hatami
Vice President for Programming: Sophia Cavalluzzi

BU Council Representative: Willa Scolari

Ballot Initiatives:
  • Constitutional Amendments – passed
  • Mandatory Student Activity Fee referendum – passed

2020 Election Timeline:

  • January 28: Letters of Intent period begins
  • February 10: Letters of Intent & Candidate Signature Sheets due
  • February 11 – 14: Special Letters of Intent Period (Office of VPMA; BU Council Rep)
  • February 11: Candidates meeting
  • February 12: Campaigning begins (all except VPMA and BU Council Rep)
  • February 18: Special Letters of Intent Candidates Meeting (VPMA and BU Council Rep candidates only)
  • February 19: Campaigning begins (VPMA and BU Council Rep candidates); Candidate platforms due
  • February 26: Sweeps (candidates give speeches and answer questions)
    • Location: Union – Mandela Room
    • Time: 8pm – 11pm
  • March 15: Removal from ballot deadline
  • March 17: Election (via B-Engaged)

Download the Election Calendar

Position Descriptions and Requirements:

In order to run for any position on the SA E-Board, you must have spent at least 75 semester class days (roughly one semester) as at least one of the following:

  • A voting SA Congress member
  • A voting SA E-Board Officer
  • A justice on the SA Judicial Board
  • An official E-Board member of any SA-chartered student group, including community councils
  • Someone who performs continual services that entitle them to compensation in Student Association funds (such as an SA business employee or stipended E-Board office assistant)

In addition, certain positions have additional prerequisites:

  1. Vice President for Finance 
    • You must have at least 75 semester class days of experience in one of the following: 
      1. A paid assistant to the Vice President for Finance
      2. A member of the SA Congress Finance Committee (FinCo)
      3. A position in which you have authority to access a Student Association financial account (a student organization’s President or Treasurer who has passed the Treasurer’s exam).
  2. Vice President for Programming
    • You must have at least 75 semester class days of experience as a member of the Student Association Programming Board (SAPB).

Expectations and Position Descriptions:

Each officer is expected to spend an average of at least 25 hours per week on their job while classes are in session and spend reduced hours while classes are out of session. There is also a 2.0 GPA requirement. The following is a list of the constitutional responsibilities of each E-Board position, in order of rank.

  1. President, president@binghamtonsa.org
    • Coordinates, oversees, and chairs the Executive Board.
    • Is the primary representative and spokesperson of the Student Association.
  2. Executive Vice President, evp@binghamtonsa.org
    • Coordinates, facilitates, and promotes the establishment or accession of new subsidiary organizations.
    • Coordinates, supports, and works with subsidiary organizations.
  3. Vice President for Finance, vpf@binghamtonsa.org
    • Trains, assists, and coordinates all who deal with the Student Association’s finances.
    • Implements the financial procedures and recommends necessary changes in the financial policies to Congress.
  4. Vice President for Academic Affairs, vpaa@binghamtonsa.org
    • Coordinates and oversees Advocates, which counsels and represents any student requesting such representation when accused of violating Binghamton University policy.
    • Coordinates and oversees the Student Association’s advocacy relating to academic matters.
  5. Vice President for Multicultural Affairs, vpma@binghamtonsa.org
    • Coordinates, oversees, and chairs the Intercultural Awareness Committee.
    • Promotes and facilitates a diverse, equitable, inclusive, and multicultural University community.
  6. Vice President for Programming, vpp@binghamtonsa.org
    • Coordinates and assists the programming efforts of Student Association entities as appropriate.
    • Coordinates, oversees, and chairs the Programming Board which produces and facilitates large-scale programming.

BU Council Representative

Furthermore, although it is not a position on the SA E-Board, the student representative to the Binghamton University Council will be elected using the same timeline as above. However, since the BU Council Representative represents both graduate and undergraduate students and is not a member of the SA E-Board, there are a number of differences:

  • 300 signatures  required, but may be any combination of undergraduate and graduate students. 
  • There are no prerequisites (i.e. 75 semester class days of experience doing…)
  • There is no GPA requirement

The following is a short description of the BU Council Representative position (bucrep@binghamton.edu):

The BU Council Representative is a full voting member of the Binghamton University Council in accordance with Article 8 §356 of the NY Education Law and is accountable to both the Student Association (SA) and the Graduate Student Organization (GSO).

For more details about the specific responsibilities of each position and rules about campaigning, please read the SA’s Management Policies. Further questions can be directed to the respective office holder.

If you have any questions about the elections, please contact elections@binghamtonsa.org or visit the SA Office, UUW 203 (past Visions).

All candidates should be familiar with the Student Association’s Constitution and Management Policies

For the election, all candidates should be sure to read and abide by the requirements set forth in Section IV of the Management Policies (page 13). 

Letters of Intent Packet:

  • Candidate Signature Sheet 
    • SA E-Board Requirement: 250 unique signatures 
    • BU Council Rep Requirement: 300 unique signatures required
    • Individuals may only sign for one candidate in a given race.
      • e.g. If there are multiple candidates in the VPP race, Student A may only sign for one of the candidates. If Student A signs for two VPP candidates, their signature is invalidated for both candidates for whom they’ve signed. It is up to the candidates to be aware of this policy and ask students if they’ve signed for anyone else in that bid for position.
    • When turning in signature sheets, candidates MUST also e-mail a typed spreadsheet of the names and e-mails from their signature sheet to elections@binghamtonsa.org.
  • Certification of Signatures Sheet
  • Candidate Affiliation Disclosure Form
  • Letter of Intent
    • Cover letter informing committee of your name, contact information, election cycle in which you’re running (2020-2021), and position you intend to run for. E-mail this information to elections@binghamtonsa.org
Khaleel James
Endorsed by: CIW, Dickinson, Hillside, Mountainview, OC3, Susquehanna
As President of the Student Association, I will be a resource that students can turn to. Over the past three years, I have been involved in the Student Association both under the Vice President for Multicultural Affairs and President’s office. I have served on the Binghamton Town-Gown Advisory Board and worked on countless initiatives that have come out of the Student Association. The reason why I want to be President of the SA is simple: our community needs guidance. To me, that is truly why people turn to the SA, whether that be as an organization or as an individual. Administrators turn to the SA because they want to better understand the severity of their student trials and tribulations. Staff and faculty consult the SA on student needs so they can create the best programs possible. The community members of Binghamton ask the SA to be an ally and engage its students in the local area. Students – the essence of our organization – always have the support of the Student Association and we will continue to be there when they need us. Since I first arrived on campus I have taken the steps to garner the knowledge necessary to guide others.
Maggie Koekkoek
Endorsed by: CIW, Dickinson, Hinman, Hillside, Mountainview, Newing, OC3
As the Executive Vice President my three main goals will be restructuring our mandatory leadership conferences, enhancing communication from and accessibility to the EVP office, and placing an emphasis on effective transitioning for newly elected leaders of our student organizations. The updated trainings will give more pertinent information to our student leaders that will specifically help them with their roles as executive board members within the Student Association. I will also strive to make the EVP office a more accessible place for students to come seek help with the day to day tasks involved in running their club. I want to create a more open door schedule so that students can always come in and get help from someone in my office. Lastly, I will institute a training session at the end of the spring semester for newly elected eboards to learn the ins and outs of the Student Association before beginning their terms. I believe that this would solve the issue of the confusion that we often see at the beginning of the year. Overall I will aim to strengthen the support and foundation in good leadership for the future of our student organizations.
Jacob Eckhaus
Endorsed by: CIW, Dickinson, Hinman, Hillside, Mountainview, Newing, OC3
As the Vice President for Finance my main goals will be to increase the scope of the advisor program and further the amount of group outreach coming from my office. While most of what the VPF office does is very straightforward and more administrative in practice, the advisor program has been one of the main things that has grown over the past few years. As Head Advisor this year, I lead the most successful year the program has seen. I plan on continuing this trend, and utilizing advisors throughout the full school year to ensure that groups are receiving the support they need from the first day of classes to the last. I also want to increase the amount of outreach done by my office. While much of this will be through the advisor program, making sure that every group has the resources they need to be financially successful is one of my top priorities. By checking in with groups on a more regular basis, my office will ensure that any potential issues are caught before they manifest. With these changes we can bring the VPF office to new levels of success.
David Hatami
Endorsed by: Dickinson, Hillside, Mountainview, Newing, Susquehanna
We need to make Binghamton University a place where everyone, regardless of race, religion, gender, or sexual identity can feel accepted, included, and comfortable. As VPMA, I first would like to forge a strong, positive relationship between the student body and University Administration; an important first step in addressing the inadequate University responses to numerous incidents within the past few semesters. I believe greater communication and cooperation between Administration and the Student Body will allow for positive developments for all parties involved, and will allow for my office to facilitate cultural sensitivity training with faculty and University Police Officers so that students no longer feel as alienated as they may do on campus. In addition to this, I see it as imperative to work with the University on increasing funding for mental health resources on campus, as well as expand upon on-campus cultural food sites, such as the Halal-Station, which is severely ignored. Beyond this, I would like to facilitate a stronger sense of general unity and community among the multicultural organizations on campus, through greater club collaboration and outreach. Community building is a crucial factor of my campaign; it is the key to empowerment, devotion, cultural awareness, and recognition.
Sophia Cavalluzzi
Endorsed by: CIW, Hinman, Hillside, Mountainview, Newing, OC3
As Vice President for Programming, I plan to actively work on campus engagement, which will benefit the student body in a multitude of ways. First, I will make it a priority to have a clear and direct line of communication with campus to ensure all feedback and concerns are heard. I will hold regular office hours and utilize social media to keep campus informed. Furthermore, I will attend organization meetings of those groups who would like to meet and take notes on their feedback. Chairs of each SAPB committee will hold weekly office hours that members of the student body can attend. By improving campus communication, I will be able to achieve growth of the SAPB. I want the university campus to know who we are, what we do, and how to get involved. I also want to raise awareness of our collaborations sector of the SAPB, in which campus organizations can partner with the board to put on events. By making campus more engaged with the programming board, I strive to maintain the success of our newly implemented events, such as Fall Fest, as well as shed light on some of our smaller events, like Battle of the Bands.
Joshua Dorfman
Endorsed by: CIW, Hillside, Mountainview, Newing, OC3
My platform stands on five significant pillars: mental health, physical wellbeing, student advising, learning workshops, and auxiliary academic resources. In terms of mental health, I view this as priority number one for the office of the VPAA. Mental health resources and availability need to be improved for all students on campus. The resources need to take many forms, from professionals, to awareness, to spaces where students can go to feel secure on campus. I believe that physical wellbeing stands next to mental health as a priority. Health awareness needs to improve on-campus, from nutritional availability to fitness opportunities. If students are healthy, they will feel better and perform better in class. Advising for students needs to improve on campus. There needs to be more advisors. I want to offer advising opportunities through the office of the VPAA. Learning workshops will give students an opportunity to learn other skills that are not traditionally taught on campus. Not everyone comes from the same background, and this will give students the opportunities to learn necessary life skills. Lastly, auxiliary resources, from printing availability and ease of use, to school supplies and the price of textbooks, to professor communications can all use improvement.

Willa Scolari
Endorsed by: Dickinson, Hillside, Newing, Susquehanna
Communication, Advocacy, Inclusivity: Focusing on these three major points, I believe Binghamton will improve and be a better campus. I plan to strengthen and have a clearer line of communication between the student body and the administration with policies, decisions, and issues. I will advocate for student’s needs and inquiries while also incorporating and emphasizes on ways to include all students at Binghamton — giving them campus and education they deserve. Being a Spring Admission ‘transfer’ and finishing up my third semester at Binghamton, through my own, unique experiences, I’ve already witnessed many pressing issues that are not getting enough attention. And I would use this opportunity to show that I can empathize and advocate for the student body at Binghamton University. A major issue that continuously needs to be worked on, is strengthening and having more mental health resources available and accessible for students. Another, is the disparity between career/advising resources for Watson/SOM versus for Harpur Students, where many Harpur Students feel as though their advising lacks compared to other schools. Lastly, I would like to find ways to maximize and improve transportation on campus, whether it’s looking into more parking and/or adding more transportation on weekends.

Dante Turnbull
Endorsed by: Hinman, Mountainview

As BU Council representative I am running on a platform that promotes student representation with the goal of Binghamton University becoming more inclusive and representative of its minority populations. I also plan on trying to foster better political discourse on campus, one that values free speech as well as students rights to protest. With the upcoming 2020 elections I want everyone to feel like their voices are heard, appreciated and taken with seriousness by the administration. Similarly to my predecessor, I plan on increasing transparency between the students and the administration in hopes of creating a campus culture where students feel that they aren’t subject to but apart of its governing bodies.

In addition to Executive Board and BU Council Representative positions, this year’s election will include two additional ballot items:

SA Constitution Amendments

On March 11, 2020, SA Congress approved a resolution to amend various elements of the SA Constitution. Per Student Association rules, “a referendum open to the entire Student Association membership must then be held within 20 semester class days…A two-thirds majority of those voting is required to enact the amendment (SA Constitution, Article I.C.2.). “

For a summary of proposed changes to the constitution, please review the document here (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1dSgiAG20Xnqlq-RTh9Q6IST3k_nWKvDVaIcZ4DvPIH0/).

Notes for review:

  • All comments highlighted in yellow are new additions.
  • All comments highlighted in red are redactions.

Student Activity Fee

Also up for certification this year is a yes/no vote on whether the Student Activity Fee should remain mandatory.

The Student Activity Fee is responsible for funding the Student Association’s numerous activities, organizations, and services. These include things such as OCCT, Fall Concert, Spring Fling, Harpur’s Ferry, and ALL allocated budgets for SA Organizations. 

This biennial referendum is required by SUNY Trustees Policy #3901, which states “Prior to the close of the academic year 2004-2005 and every two years thereafter, the student body (or such components thereof as may be designated by the campus president or designee) at each state-operated campus of the State University of New York shall determine by referendum whether student activity programs shall be supported by either voluntary or mandatory student fees” (SUNY Trustees Policy 3901, A.).

Questions about the Student Association elections? Please contact elections@binghamtonsa.org or visit the SA Office, UUW 203 (past Visions).