NISG candidates aim to better campus

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Karla DeBruin, Managing Editor

With spring semester in full swing, the Northern Iowa Student Government (NISG) is electing their next senators. Elections entail a three week process in which students who want to be a senator must get at least 18 signatures from their college, or 10 signatures if they’re undecided or a grad student. Those signatures can get them on the ballot, then on Feb. 22 – 23 students can vote for them in MyUNIverse. If elected, the prospective senators will be sworn in around April.

NISG Chief Justice Parker Daniels said, “(The senators) will represent the students of their college by advocating and working on their behalf. This means meeting with their constituents and working on various initiatives of their choosing. The initiatives that they work on focus on helping students and making life on campus and the college experience better for all students.”

Daniels continued, “The students that are running for a senate position are students who want to help make your life as a UNI student better, so you should support them by voting for whichever candidate is up for election in your college.”

Some past initiatives senators have worked on or are currently working on include distributing free menstrual products around campus, creating the Meditation room in Maucker Union and advocating for mental health funding. Additionally, they represent their constituents through the committee work they take part in as a member of NISG.

If you want to get involved in NISG, you can apply for a senate seat in the fall, or apply for an upper cabinet position in the executive branch or judicial branch.

Check out NISG’s website for more information about these positions.

NISG holds many events throughout the year for students including their weekly NISG meetings every Wednesday in Maucker Union at 8 p.m..

“One thing that I would like students to know about NISG is that it is a great way to get involved and make a difference here on campus,” Daniels said. “The role of NISG as a whole is to work for and advocate on behalf of all students.”

Meet the senators up for election below and to the right.

Jacob Merill

Year: Senior

Major: Social Science Education

Position: College of Education

Why do you want to be a part of NISG: UNI has helped me become the best version of myself, and I would like to pay that forward by helping my fellow students become the best versions of themselves.

What initiative do you want to work on: to raise money for our student health services to hopefully help students receive the mental health help that our student body so desperately deserves. I would also like to take part in the initiative to help place menstrual products in bathrooms on campus for our peers who need them. I also would like to focus on potential solutions to our professor shortage, and potentially an initiative to grow our panther pantry.

What are you involved in around campus: you might see me in a few organizations such as Greek life where I serve as the President of Pi Kappa Alpha, I am also a member of both Kappa Delta Pi and Pi Gamma Mu, the education and social science honors societies respectively.

What do you want UNI students to know about the senate or NISG:  would like students to know that the best way to have your voice heard on campus is through NISG, make sure to vote!

Sam Caughron

Year: Sophomore

Major: Public Relations and Political Science

Minor: Legal Studies and Pre-Professional in Law

Position: College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Why do you want to be a part of NISG: To create legitimate, everlasting and structural change to UNI that improves the lives and experiences of especially students, but also faculty and staff. I want to encourage other students to get involved with NISG so they too can be change-agents for our university.

What initiative do you want to work on: To create a centralized calendar of events from all student organizations, as well as placing room reservations in different buildings on that calendar as well. I want to create how-to graphics, host seminars and educate the student body on how to identify and combat online misinformation, and I also want to encourage students to get directly involved with local politics.

What are you involved in around campus: UNI Proud, UNI Democrats, Northern Iowa Feminists and I hope to join Model UN.

What do you want UNI students to know about the senate or NISG:

Voting in the NISG elections and paying attention to what we do is drastically important to ensure we are working on initiatives and lobbying the state government in ways that the student body actually desires. If you want to create real, structural, administrative changes on campus and the way the system is set up, this is a huge way to do it.

James Carolus

Year: Freshman

Major: Comprehensive Secondary Science Education


Position: College of Arts Humanities and Sciences

Why do you want to be a part of NISG: I am currently already a part of Senate and have enjoyed getting to help students and help improve campus and would enjoy the opportunity to continue to do so.

What initiative do you want to work on: I am currently attempting to create an LGBTQ+ education course. I would like to continue to work on that and complete that work.

What are you involved in around campus: I currently work in Rod Library, I am the Chair of the Governmental and Legislative Affairs Committee and I am involved in the Organization and Finance committee.

What do you want UNI students to know about the senate or NISG: Senate is serious and has real power but Senate also has a lot of fun. It is a great way to make friends and have a good time while helping your fellow students and improving the campus.

Trevor Meyers

Year: Junior

Major: History 

Minor: Public History and Certificate in Museum Studies

Position: College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Why do you want to be a part of NISG: I have always liked student senate and being an advocate for students. It will help me grow as a student and a professional. It’s also a great way to get involved at the university and make change for all students.

What initiative do you want to work on: Transfer student membership program and work with recruiting more transfer students to work in student government.

What are you involved in around campus: A senator last semester for CSBS, vice president of student advocacy for TAIG and a writer at the Northern Iowan.

What do you want UNI students to know about the senate or NISG: We are here for the students. We really encourage you to get involved on campus.

Geneva Bell

Year: Sophomore

Major: Biology

Minor: Spanish

Position: College of Humanities Arts and Sciences

Why do you want to be a part of NISG: I want to make positive changes at the university that will impact the student’s quality of life.

What initiative do you want to work on: A recycling project for the campus. I hope to create a program for students living off campus to bring their recycling to the school for drop off because Cedar Falls does not have a recycling service that goes house to house to pick up recycling.

What do you want UNI students to know about the senate or NISG:  NISG is a direct link to the state of Iowa’s government, and the work we do directly affects them. It’s also a great organization to participate in, and it is very interesting to see how everything works throughout the University of Northern Iowa.