The Student Government Association Senate for the 2017-2018 school year is officially set following an email announcement on Saturday. Most senate elections this year had equal amounts of candidates and seats available, but the International Student Representative seat had two candidates running for one open seat.
Yemurai Mapurisa ultimately came out ahead.
When asked why she decided to run, Mapurisa answered without hesitation.
“I just think that international students are not catered for to the extent that they are supposed to be catered for,” Mapurisa said.
Mapurisa has no specific plans for what changes she hopes to make, but she is certain that supporting and aiding the international community is the reason she ran and the reason she will make the decisions she does as a senator.
Mapurisa, who works as a CA in Westerlin and as a tutor in the Reading and Writing Center, said she has been very lucky with the roles she has been given on campus.
“I have a certain amount of privilege because of the positions I hold,” Mapurisa said. “But what about the people who aren’t privileged?”
Those unprivileged people are the ones that Mapurisa plans to save from getting “thrown under the bus” by the non-international community or administration.
Mapurisa’s candidacy allowed for an unusual situation for SGA in the coming school year. Her election means there will be more than one international student serving as an SGA senator. The current international representative, Chris Wilson, serves as the SGA Speaker of the Senate, but decided to run for the Business Senator rather than the International seat that he currently holds.
“I was slightly more detached from the international community this year,and I wanted to give the chance to someone else,” Wilson said.
Wilson agreed that Mapurisa’s election was a good choice for the international community and that he was in full support of her as a candidate.
“I know that she’s more prominent on campus as a figure that’ll help make a change for the international community,” Wilson said.
Wilson ultimately is glad to know that the international student reach is being extended more into SGA and campus.
“I’m just glad that there’s more than one of me now,” Wilson said.
Mapurisa shares his enthusiasm and commented that working with Wilson will only improve her time as a senator.
“Him being there gives me confidence that there’s someone like me,” Mapurisa said.
Mapurisa’s opponent, Theo Yi, did not respond for comment.