Based on his experience in student government and a proven track record of delivering on proposed initiatives, the Wheel firmly endorses Ashish Gandhi as the best option on the ballot for College Council (CC) president.
Gandhi brings two years of experience with student government to the table by having served as Student Government Associate (SGA) Representative, and despite not previously serving on CC, he has demonstrated a clear understanding of how the organization operates through his frequent collaboration with CC. Most notably, he has worked cooperatively with the Council through his work in SGA.
He also brings a fresh outlook to the position due to his other leadership positions on campus, including his work as Treasurer of the Hindu Students Association.
Thanks to his familiarity with some of the intricacies of the budget issues that the Council faces, Gandhi recognizes that one of the most notable complaints with the organization in the past has been the refusal of past Councils to challenge the monetary code and make it more accessible to student groups.
Gandhi also hopes to increase the scale and turnout for student events by implementing financial incentives for organizations that choose to join forces and co-sponsor events.
He is open to further pursuing cost-cutting measures that have already been proposed but not yet implemented by CC, such as the potential transition of the College Readership program to an online-subscription format.
Gandhi also has proven results from being a member of SGA, with his most notable accomplishment being an expansion of the EmoryCard that now allows Eagle Dollars to be accepted at more locations.
Gandhi has additionally spearheaded an initiative that is looking at making the EmoryCard more like debit card. It is proposals such as this one that instill confidence that Gandhi is a thinker who can bring new, creative ideas to CC.
That being said, we do have concerns about whether Gandhi is capable of truly connecting to the student body. One of his highest priority goals as an SGA rep has been to push forward the University administration’s proposal to make Emory a tobacco-free campus.
We feel that it is the job of a responsible SGA legislator to be the voice of the student body and be diligent in evaluating student reaction to the proposal before taking a course of action. By blindly jumping on board with the administration on this issue without gauging student opinion, Gandhi is guilty of breaking the trust that comes with being a representative.
Regardless, it is evident that Gandhi’s leadership ability, qualifications and productive track record set him miles apart from the opposition.
CC is long overdue for a step in a different direction.
We hope that if elected, Gandhi will live up to his campaign promise to have CC rethink the way it is currently structured by pushing for creative solutions to problems rather than settling for the status quo that the organization has become synonymous with in recent years.