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Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
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Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
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Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
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Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
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Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
Sports
Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
Sports
Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
Sports
Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
Sports
Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.
Sports
Walker Crosby Wins GCAA Tournament in Augusta, GA
With Crosby’s motivation and determination, this will probably be the first of many wins to come for the budding Paladin star.

Meet the Candidates for SGA President

Asha Marie and Rosie Kim answer The Paladin’s questions. Voting opens today, Mar. 8, at 9am.
SGA President Candidates discuss their platforms and strategies moving into the election.
Price St. Clair
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Elections for Furman’s Student Government Association (SGA) Executive Council will be held today and tomorrow. The voting form, accessible through SyncDin, will be open from 9:00 a.m. today until 5:00 p.m. tomorrow. Students have the opportunity to vote for a president, vice president, treasurer and secretary to represent the student body as a whole. 

Asha Marie and Rosie Kim, both juniors, are the two candidates for SGA President. Marie is known for her social justice advocacy, and her candidacy was made possible by a school-wide petition vote last month. Kim is an international student from South Korea with prior experience in SGA, having served as class secretary for the class of 2022 during both her freshman and sophomore years at Furman. In lieu of a synchronous debate or candidates’ forum, The Paladin asked both candidates to comment on the same set of questions. Their written responses are below.

The Paladin

Why are you running for SGA President, and why should students vote for you?

Asha Marie

I’m running for SGA President because I want to represent students who have been underrepresented and unheard in SGA and other spaces of power across campus. I’ve been a loud advocate on campus for my entire Furman career and I want to use the unique access to administration and the student body to create more positive change. I want to show students, specifically students from underrepresented backgrounds like me, that they are seen and heard, their voices are valued, and we can mobilize to create the change we want to see. Students should vote for me if they support diversity, equity, and inclusion. They should vote for me if they want a leader who has concrete plans, is committed to advocating for positive change, and will follow through with their plans.

Rosie Kim

I am running because I would like to make Furman a place where everyone feels welcomed and at home. I want to build an inclusive community where everyone feels the sense of belonging. Especially after this year with COVID, I think it will be so important to unify our community again. My vision of diversity and inclusion embraces students from all spectrums and my campaign is something that everyone can get behind.


The Paladin

How have your background and experiences, both as a Furman student and before coming to Furman, prepared you for the job of SGA President?

Asha Marie

Before coming to Furman, I was a high school activist and doing that work directly led to me coming to Furman. When I was sixteen, I took a very public stance and advocated for positive change in my community. I was called the N-word, received anonymous death threats, and faced a lot of backlash from community members who didn’t believe in the change I was advocating for. Since coming to Furman, I have continued to be very public about what I think is right and push for positive change on our campus. It’s not easy to know people don’t agree with you and maybe that they even don’t like you because of what you stand for. But I have never been able to not stand for what’s right and that’s something I make sure to continue to do while I’m here.

Specifically at Furman, I have grown a lot as a leader in organizations like the Shucker Leadership Institute, Dins Dialogues, and as the president of two student organizations. In the community, I work with two non-profits creating and leading programs for students, specifically supporting them in development of leadership and advocacy skills. I’ve learned a lot about turning ideas into action plans, supporting others, and advocating for what’s right.

I say all of this to say that I’m prepared to be SGA president because I know that you can’t be afraid of people not liking you when you’re pushing for positive change. And I’m not afraid. I’m a team player — collaboration and dialogue is very important to me when implementing change. I’m also totally willing to do the hard work and heavy lifting of pushing our community forward. I’ve been doing that and I will continue doing that as Student Body President.

Rosie Kim

I have served as a class secretary both my freshmen and sophomore year. My experience in SGA had allowed me to learn how to represent my class and made me want to pursue this position to make a bigger impact on Furman’s campus. I also have been involved with various leadership positions on campus such as Shucker Leadership Institute, Orientation Staff, and Admissions Ambassadors. With my roles in those organizations, I learned how to become a more compassionate leader. Also, I am an international student who has been studying abroad in the United States since high school. I am from South Korea and went to high school in Michigan. So in a lot of ways, I was a minority coming to Furman. However, my time at Furman was not constricted at all due to the fact that I am a minority. Rather, I was given so many opportunities and was surrounded by the community that provided me an overwhelming sense of community and made me feel so loved. I am so thankful for this school and that is why I am so determined to give back to this school.


The Paladin

How would you be a different SGA president than your opponent?

Asha Marie

I have a lot of respect for Rosie as a friend I’ve grown next to in organizations like Shucker and O-staff. I think we have a lot in common and hold many of the same values. I am interested in long-lasting change that is going to make Furman more equitable and inclusive. My plans are about creating infrastructure to support marginalized students, making the current structures (like SGA itself) more transparent, accessible, and inclusive, and encouraging more collaboration and conversation across different groups of students on campus. I’m not okay with just accepting or settling when things aren’t right. I work hard to advocate for justice and I am committed to doing the hard work.

Rosie Kim

I am the first international student to ever run for Student Body president and of course will be the first ever to be elected. I have had such different experiences and perspectives coming to Furman than anyone else. Yet, I learned to love this place and its people, and that says a lot. I bring in such a diverse, broad spectrum of views to the school, and will continue to do so as a student body president by making positive changes on campus.

In addition, while we both focus on diversity and inclusion, a key component of my campaign is self-love. I think “love yourself” is an extremely important message that needs to be spread across campus, and this is a big step towards making our student body more unified and understanding of each other. It is my hope, if I am elected, to begin a campaign of self- love where we reconcile with our inner thoughts and begin to love and accept ourselves for who we are born to be. How can we unite without first loving ourselves? I plan to unite Furman through a campaign of self-reflection and self-acceptance that will lead to more cohesive, empathetic, and loving community. My campaign is not targeted to specific groups of people. Rather, I would like to include everyone to the change I hope to bring at Furman.

Lastly, I have experiences of serving on SGA in the past, so I hope to utilize those experiences to develop SGA more.


The Paladin

A lot of students don’t pay attention to SGA at all, and those that do often have ambivalent views about it. SGA is sometimes perceived as mismanaged, elitist, and not representative of all students. As SGA president, what will you do to repair this reputation?

Asha Marie

I definitely have been a student who has held this view. It’s what made me not trust SGA in the past and why I never ran for office sooner. It’s also how I learned how powerful students outside of SGA are. What I realized even in working to overturn the clause that prevents students like me from running for SGA president was that a lot of what SGA does is not super visible and some of our student representatives aren’t super interested in advocating for their fellow students. I have specific plans for helping to make SGA more transparent and representatives more accessible. I also hope to just be a more visible and active president in our campus communities. I want to host more spaces for community dialogue and encourage a lot more collaboration amongst student organizations. I also want to encourage more students, especially students of marginalized identities, to step up for leadership roles and help them see that they are powerful, valued, and so important for our community.

Rosie Kim

I think there are several ways I would like to work on to repair the reputation you described. First, as one of my campaign platforms, I have specific plans of pursuing collaboration with different student organizations. I think a more active SGA that is working hard to create as many opportunities for students will show how dedicated we are for the student body. Secondly, I would like more transparency in what SGA exactly does and how exactly we are working to improve student life. This way, I want people to see that SGA is working hard and trying to keep our promises kept. Additionally, I am hopeful that this will bring more active participation in SGA from the student body and will be encouraging people to run for offices to make change themselves.


The Paladin

As far as you know, what powers does SGA have to create and/or influence policy on campus? What are the top three projects you hope to pursue if elected?

Asha Marie

SGA can do a lot! They have access to the entire student body and administration, which means our SGA representatives can affect almost, if not every aspect of campus life. We’ve seen how things in the dining hall have been changed, how heaters have been added to outdoor spaces in the cold, and how quickly they can bring change if they want. The top projects I want to focus on as Student Body President are: Community Days (campus wide mental health days where student organizations are encouraged to collaborate to do fun things across campus), building infrastructure to support low-income students with textbook costs (I envision this as working with the library to expand their textbook reserve and encouraging professors to put their textbooks in reserve at the lib, scan chapters instead of requiring students to buy a whole book, or allowing students to buy older editions to save money. I also see this as working with departments to set aside funds that low-income students can request if their textbook costs are too great.), and creating a space on campus for commuter students during the day to store their things, access to a fridge, and microwave.

Rosie Kim

I think the most important job of SGA is representing the student body. SGA will work to have everyone’s voices be heard and adequately represented. In my opinion, SGA has the power to, and should, collaborate with other student organizations to create synergy in making opportunities of development for the student body. In addition, make sure everyone’s voices are heard.

I have three main keywords in my campaign which are unity, collaboration, and self-love. I have projects I hope to pursue associated with each keyword. (It’s very hard for me to choose three single projects, I really want to pursue all of them). Some of the projects that I really would like to pursue are: Faculty Panel, Furman Day, collaboration with other student organizations, and self-love campaign. You can find more details of these from my rosiekim4SBP account.


The Paladin

In 2018, the National Survey of Student Engagement found that Furman freshmen were 17-20 percentage points more likely than students at our peer institutions to say that they often had discussions with people with political views other than their own. What will you do as SGA president to incorporate feedback from the broad array of viewpoints on our campus?

Asha Marie

One of my plans as SGA president is to host town-halls as CLPs and have them co-sponsored by SDC. I would love to see a campus more engaged in dialogue. I’ve seen how impactful dialogue can be after taking an intergroup dialogue class and serving as a Dins Dialogue facilitator. Further, another plan I have is to create more spaces for public forums across campus. I’ve loved reading the newspaper this past year because so many new voices are writing about topics that I don’t often hear about, but it's still hard to host meaningful dialogue. We have seen how social media can bring us together (and push us apart) via Instagram accounts like MissedConnections, and I think that’s awesome — I just think it would be more productive and more meaningful to have more physical spaces to host important dialogues across our campus. I also think going beyond just talking will be really important to our progress as a community and contributing to a sense of inclusion and belonging — we have to commit to action to show that we’re really listening to each other.

Rosie Kim

As SGA president, I think it would be my job to create and provide spaces for students where they feel they are safe to discuss and express their opinions on different matters. Student government as an organization, we should not be endorsing or favoring one side of the spectrum. Rather, give equal opportunities and standings for all students from all spectrum, and have their voices be heard.


The Paladin

Millions more Americans are being vaccinated against COVID-19 every day. Part of the job of our next SGA president will be to guide our campus from a world of COVID-19 restrictions to one with no masks and a lot less Zoom. How do you plan to navigate this transition?

Asha Marie

I won’t pretend to be an expert on COVID-19 or how to handle it. I will take the recommendations of experts and the advising of our Furman Focused leadership. I do imagine more collaboration amongst student groups and I imagine a lot more opportunities to build community. I think a lot of us are missing genuine connection with one another and I want to make sure there are always opportunities to create those connections even if we still are navigating a world that looks pretty similar to what we’re living in now. The key word, here, I guess, is flexibility. I think that’s why it’s especially important to make sure we have plans for building for community, encouraging collaboration, and advocating for things like community mental health days.

Rosie Kim

I am hopeful that a lot of us will be back on campus next year, and we get to experience the year of reunion. This definitely will be a period of adjustment for all of us, whether we were remote learners or in-person learners this year. However, as I have a specific category of my campaign under “unity” of how I envision to promote unity between the Furman community, and I have some plans to make it the best possible union. In terms of the safety precautions, we cannot be 100% relived and ignore the risk completely. So, another part of my job will be keeping the campus aware of the ongoing situation and trying to build the safest community possible.


The Paladin

Both of you have run campaigns that emphasize unity. What does unity mean to you, and how do you plan to unify our campus community while also promoting respect and tolerance for those with different backgrounds, experiences, and viewpoints?

Asha Marie

I want to emphasize that my campaign is not about unity. I don’t think unity is attainable before we are willing to hold hard conversations and address the things that are sustaining injustice and inequity on our campus. I think focusing on tolerance and acceptance of difference is a divergence on the path to real equity and inclusion — we need to be able to critically look at the systems and structures that have been built on campus and ask who they’re supporting and who they’re harming. And then we need to work to dismantle what’s harmful and inequitable. We can build community, be inclusive, and foster a sense of belonging among all students all while doing important DE&I work. Some of my goals for this include strengthening collaboration amongst SDC and student organizations, creating more spaces for public forum, hosting town-halls as CLPs with more dialogue centered components, and better supporting cultural events and initiatives. I just think that only focusing on unity without focusing on what’s causing disunity will never allow us to have strong and healthy communal relations. I think we can advocate for necessary change and support marginalized students and build community through that support. Without commitment to action that actively makes the lives of students better, we will never be able to come together in unity. So I’m working to build a foundation for a more inclusive and equitable campus so one day we may be able to be truly unified as a community.

Rosie Kim

My view of unity includes embracing everyone from all different backgrounds. As I have said many times during my campaign, everyone is so unique. Our individuality is what makes us stronger, and therefore, our uniqueness is what has the potential to power us forward. Our differences are not what set us apart, rather they help us bring various perspectives to the table that push us forward to move as one. My vision of unity is bringing everyone together with different backgrounds, experiences, and viewpoints, and acknowledging them for how unique they are. I want to break the barriers and transform them into bridges, together.

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