Students of the Northern Marianas College have expressed confidence anew in their incumbent leader, Chenglong “Alex” Shen, who won again this year as president of the Associated Students of NMC, defeating contender Faithful Mendiola.
Shen received an overwhelming 91 votes against his opponent’s 72 votes during the two-day election held on campus starting Tuesday.
Shen is a Liberal Arts major and will sit as a member of the management team, along with the elected presidents of the Staff Senate and the Faculty Senate.
Shen vowed yesterday to continue to represent the “true voices and concerns” of students and to address issues affecting the studentry.
“The ASNMC will continue to represent students effectively with a team of excellent individuals who will become valuable assets for the students and our institution,” he told Saipan Tribune after the announcement of the results.
Shen shared that the new officers will meet in the coming weeks to identify their goals and objectives this academic year.
“Meanwhile, our long-term goal is to continuously promote the general welfare of the student body. Additionally, hoping that our students will become more proactive in the coming year and after, we intend to make this academic year more lively and fun for the students,” he added.
According to Queanna C. Sablan, ASNMC election coordinator, 169 votes were cast in this election, considered a “low” turnout compared to the 1,133 enrollment for this fall semester. All registered for the semester were eligible to vote.
“One of the biggest challenges the committee faced in this year’s election was getting more students involved in the voting process. We anticipated that at least one-third of the student population would vote. With a student population this semester of 1,133, only 169 votes were cast,” she told Saipan Tribune, adding that the committee will seek avenues on how to better promote student involvement with NMC’s student government.
Besides Shen, the other new officers of the ASNMC are Lani Russell as vice president, Riya R. Nathrani A treasurer, and Jian Joyner as secretary.
Russell bested opponent Faithful Mendiola after garnering 123 votes against the latter’s 39 votes. Nathrani was elected with 153 votes while Joyner received 162 votes.
Three senators were also elected: Ervin Cruz, Justine Conrad Mallari, and Faithful Mendiola.
According to Sablan, the officers-elect will be sworn into office during the 25th Investiture Ceremony on Monday, Sept. 30, at 11am in the NMC Student Center in Bldg. J.
Sablan recognized the student-volunteers who assisted at the polling station and with tabulation of ballots, including Silvester Javier, Charnessa Lizama, Mika Sablan, Jolly Ann Cruz, Sherwin William, and Regina Gatamngin.
ASNMC consists of a cooperative and student-driven governance body that shapes the core of student leadership. Its executive cabinet comprises four students who are elected at large by the student body and serve a one-year term in office.
The term of the ASNMC president is throughout the duration of the school year, with extension through the summer period. To keep the position, the student leader must maintain a GPA of 3.0.