This is the third part in a series looking at the Missouri Students Association presidential slates and their platform positions. This article focuses on each slate's progress in the election so far.
MSA presidential candidates Xavier Billingsley and Helena Kooi were endorsed last week by the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Sciences Student Council. Billingsley currently studies sports management in CAFNR.
“I wasn’t expecting it, but I am very happy,” Billingsley said “CAFNR Student Council and related CAFNR organizations usually have the means to support their own and support people who are behind the mission of students who try to do meaningful things inside and outside of the college. I am very happy that the CAFNR Student Council supported my slate and I am excited to work with them.”
According to a news release from the campaign, earning an endorsement from the CAFNR Student Council was one of the candidates' main goals because of the student council is in high regard on campus. The release also states that the CAFNR School currently enrolls 2,965 undergraduate students.
"It is exciting to see such an outstanding individual like Xavier working so hard to reach a high position in our student government,” CAFNR Student Council President Jana Haley said in the release. “CAFNR Student Council is happy to endorse one of CAFNR's own and is looking forward to seeing him in presidency."
Everett Bruer and Lexie Cartee have been using social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter to raise student awareness about the campaign.
“We’ve been meeting with a lot of groups, but we have no official endorsements,” Cartee said.
Cartee said the slate has also been tabling in Speakers Circle.
“This is really the time to step it up and pick it up, so we’ll be out and about tabling a couple times before the election and just meeting with people," she said. "Social media’s great.”
Cartee said she thinks this election could have higher participation than previous ones because of the student body's awareness level.
“Elections are not always as well spread as I would like, but this semester I think there are a lot of great slates and that we’re all going to be doing really well (raising awareness),” she said.
She said the Board of Elections Commissioners contributed to promoting awareness. The BEC sent out an email Oct. 24 outlining when and where to vote, as well as when debates between the slates will occur.
Running-mates Greg Loeffler and Lauren Damico have been busy, but continue to campaign.
“We’re literally booked all day today with just meeting people and different campaign events, so we’re really getting down to the wire,” Loeffler said. “It’s just an amazing feeling.”
Surrounded by campaign buttons, supporters and a root beer keg at Speakers Circle on Monday afternoon, Loeffler and Damico spoke about the necessity of endorsements.
Some candidates seek out endorsements from student organizations and other MU groups. Loeffler and Damico agree endorsements are important, but not the main goal of the campaign, Loeffler said.
“Our goal is to talk to as many students as possible and to capture as many votes as possible,” he said.
Damico said the campaign is about individual students and their votes instead of gathering endorsements from groups.
“Do (endorsements) win elections? I wouldn’t say that,” Damico said.