Colton Becker and Mehraz Rahman will be sworn in Tuesday as the student body president and vice president.
After an extended campaign period consisting of three elections, the team is working through the transition period in Student Government, during which one administration passes off its accomplishments, uncompleted initiatives and internal administrative changes to the next one.
“This is the transition period, so we’re getting our ducks lined up for the next year,” nutrition senior Becker said. “It’s like syllabus week.”
The team has attended meetings with current SG president and vice president — Alejandrina Guzman, a government and Mexican-American studies senior, and Micky Wolf, a Plan II and business honors senior — to get a grasp of what logistical changes have been made within SG and what to expect as they move forward.
“The transition is largely talking to former presidents and vice presidents, consulting with the dean of students and getting the big picture of what your year will entail,” Becker said. “This year, a big part will be … addressing inclusivity representation. I feel like we’re well equipped to handle that.”
Student representation was a point of contention during the campaign, and they’re ready to tackle it, said Rahman, a marketing and Plan II junior.
“I think that it’s valid that people are concerned about representation and inclusion,” Rahman said. “We recognize that there are systemic issues at UT, in Texas and in America that make it really hard for minorities to participate, to be more engaged, to feel included — and in fact (they are) actively discriminated against.”
In addition to increasing representation and inclusion on campus, the Becker-Rahman campaign also consisted of platform points on preventing sexual assault, bettering health and wellness, improving student living and increasing student empowerment, all of which they are prepared to move forward with, Rahman said.
The pair will have their inauguration ceremony on April 15 after they’ve led two SG meetings, at which point they hope to have finished appointing their executive board, Becker said.
The executive board is comprised of five SG members who work on the president and vice president’s staff for the length of their term. These positions include chief of staff, communications director, internal financial director, external financial director and administrative director.
As they prepare to formally take office, the pair is working on recuperating from the election season, during which all the campaigns faced verbal and physical harassment, Rahman said.
“We saw on all sides a lot of unfair treatment and things that caused severe stress and impacted all of our mental health,” Rahman said.
While the campaign was stressful, student involvement increased significantly, and the team is hoping to keep that momentum, Becker said.
“We’re excited that students who aren’t engaged in SG are reaching out to see how they can help,” Becker said. “We have an opportunity this year. More students have been engaged than ever before, and (we are) making sure that we’re harnessing that responsibly.”