The Student Government Association hosted an open platform event for spring elections this Tuesday. Candidates running for positions in the three branches of SGA — the Undergraduate Council of Students, the Undergraduate Finance Board and the Class Coordinating Board — spoke about their platforms to students at the event.
Candidates for UCS President, UFB Chair and CCB Senior Co-Presidents were required to speak at the event, The Herald previously reported. All other candidates could opt-in to speak at the event, according to Joon Nam ’23, SGA elections chair. Attendees heard from candidates running for CCB 2026 President and Treasurer and a UFB at-large representative candidate.
The open platform event, which took place in Friedman Hall, consisted of two-minute speeches from candidates, Nam said. He described the event as an opportunity for candidates to share “their goals, ideas and visions” and encouraged attendees to approach candidates with questions after the event.
Several candidates mentioned priorities such as improving student life and the University’s relationship with the Providence community.
UCS candidates talk relationship with Providence, campus life
Axel Brito ’26, Daniel Greenberg ’25 and current UCS Vice President Mina Sarmas ’24 are competing for UCS presidency. Current UCS Secretary Sarah Frank ’25 and Appointments Director Justin Li ’24.5 are running for the vice presidency, The Herald previously reported.
Brito said that UCS must “urge Brown to serve our neighbors in Providence,” referencing the city’s issues with poverty and its public school system. As UCS president, Brito hopes to be “a mouthpiece for the people.”
“Acknowledgement is not enough. We must act,” Brito said. “We cannot remain idle while others suffer.”
As vice president, Frank would also hope to improve the University’s relationship with the larger Providence community by meeting with local leaders to hear their needs. “Brown has a ton of resources and some of them go unused,” she said.
First-year CCB Class President Nick Lee ’26, who is running uncontested for next year’s 2026 CCB presidency, also emphasized the importance of giving back to the Providence community. Lee shared his idea to “establish a civic engagement event” and to make sure that CCB’s impact extends “beyond Brown.”
“I want to make sure that if we’re doing something outside the community … we’re actually helping people,” he added.
Another recurring theme among candidates was improving student life on campus.
Greenberg said he wanted to make “easy, feasible changes” to consistent problems among the student body by potentially extending dining hall hours and making Spring Weekend’s artist selection process more democratic.
“I hope to continue the work I already started,” Sarmas said, referencing her previous work to make menstrual products free and accessible on campus and support for campus food insecurity.
Li also seeks to “address the needs of the student body,” and hopes to delay the S/NC deadline and expand student access to campus dining halls, art studios and gyms, according to Nam, who spoke on Li’s behalf as health issues prevented his attendance.
Frank noted that the most important improvement to be made for student life is dining — such as making sure that the online menus are accurate and extending dining hall hours.
UFB candidates discuss transparency, diversity
Current UFB Vice Chair Arjun Krishna Chopra ’25 and UFB representative Peter Tangikyan ’24 are running for UFB chair. Representatives Ian Kim ’25 and Samuel Walhout ’25 are competing for the position of vice chair, The Herald previously reported.
UFB candidates also discussed increasing funding for student groups and the importance of diversity and accessibility.
Chopra emphasized the need to increase the student activities fee in line with inflation to support programming. “We still have so much work to do,” he added.
Chris Vanderpool ’24, a candidate for UFB at-large representative, described the Board as “not a very welcoming or inclusive space” for student leaders applying for funding, adding that UFB must improve the “accessibility of students to funding.”
Kim also hopes to ensure that student groups applying for funding can better understand UFB’s decision-making process. He described UFB’s need to implement a newsletter, similar to UCS.
Tangikyan said that UFB must “ensure that everyone’s voice is heard at Brown, especially cultural groups.”
“Having a diverse board will help create more equitable funding for everyone,” Walhout said.
Voting for SGA positions will open Friday, March 17 and close Wednesday, March 22, with results being announced that day. Undergraduates will receive their ballots through a link sent via email.
Indigo Mudbhary is a University news senior staff writer covering student government. In her free time, she enjoys running around Providence and finding new routes.