In an email to the Andover Community on Wednesday morning, Kate Dolan, Assistant Dean of Students and Residential Life, announced the pairs running for the position of 2020-2021 Student Body Co-Presidents. Some pairs had already gone public through Instagram accounts.
In non-pandemic years, candidate pairs would introduce themselves to members of the Andover community by asking for signatures. To minimize contact and include the remote members of the community, Dolan included a link to each pair’s platform and a video introduction for the Andover community to better understand each pair. The first round of voting opened this morning at 10:00 a.m. Four pairs will move on to the next round of voting.
Sam Elliot ’22 and Kennedy Ndiaye ’22
“Inclusivity is one of our biggest points on our platform, and we are thinking about in … terms of continuing to make Andover anti-racist, and then also inclusivity within grades and making sure grades are integrated and feel comfortable with the school and that no one feels new. So we would want to institute a buddy system to make sure there’s more connection between grades… [As a new Lower,] I can empathize with feeling new and [with] ideas of not knowing where to go, or not knowing where to sit,” said Ndiaye.
“Kennedy and I, we’ve been Zooming a lot over the past year, and I think the ways in which we challenge each other and push each other to think further about ideas and to really think things through has been good, and that’s been how we figured out we do work well together,” said Elliot.
Nicholas Koobation ’22 and Adya Chatterjee ’22
“We have five main categories: Mental health/Well-being, Commons/Nutrition, [Empathy, Balance, and Inclusion programs] Reform, Accountability/Openness/Transparency, and the Andover Green Plan. So for the climate curriculum, the Green Plan, we want to make Andover a more sustainable community and school that treats the environment better. We plan on doing that by helping to implement the climate coalition curriculum, which has been worked on by students and faculty in the last few years and it has been a gradual implementation. The second main idea is mental health and well-being. We all know that mental health and well-being is a very large part of all Andover students’ lives because, under the stress of Andover, we want to make it a home where you can feel safe and comfortable,” said Koobatian.
“We feel like the campaign process is going to be pretty fun because we both really like meeting people, getting to know people, and hearing their ideas. In general, the whole process of this campaign and selection is to get two people in this office that want to make a change at Andover and that will speak for the students,” said Chatterjee.
Kiran Ramratnam ’22 and Elizabeth Chou ’22
“I think I decided to run because I want to continue what has been done on campus to really create a community here with unified goals. This year I have really been inspired by a lot of student organizing events that have happened in response to anti-Asian racism and anti-Black racism, specifically and also [the] organizing by youth, in general. Additionally, being a prefect and having other leadership positions, I thought I would go a little bit further and try out co-presidency because working with the administration and working specifically with the student council has been something that I have always thought has been super cool and unique,” said Ramratnam.
“I really look forward to getting to know the student body and the other candidates better as we campaign! It’s such an exciting process, and there [are] so many amazing candidates this year. I hope that no matter what, we can support one another and build each other up in order to make Andover a better place. I’m also excited to potentially get to know faculty and other adults on campus better so that [Ramratnam] and I can be better equipped to enact change,” said Chou.
Aren Egwuekwe ’22 and Gaia Dolenc-Bueno ’22
“Our main priorities are communication and accountability. Gaia and I believe that a good relationship between the school and the students is essential to achieving the most out of an education. That relationship depends on trust, communication, and accountability. Students should feel comfortable communicating their concerns and ideas to the administration, likewise, the school should be transparent with its students. It’s also important for both sides to be willing to take accountability for their actions and work together to grow,” said Egwuekwe.
Victor Mvemba ’22 and Gabe Lima ’22
“We’re both super excited to run because running for Co-President is a very unique and once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. It’s been fun getting to know more of the student body and having the chance to create change at Andover. We hope to bring qualities of leadership, understanding, and authenticity as co-presidents. If you see us around campus be sure to introduce yourself and say hi!” said Mvemba.
Editor’s Note: ElizabethChou is an Illustration Editor for The Phillipian. Sean Meng is a Business Editor for The Phillipian.