Hello, first and foremost I would like to introduce myself: my name is Stephanie Ibarra, and I am a second year majoring in Sociology. During these unprecedented times, I have given a lot of thought on how myself and my fellow peers are able to improve our schools community as a whole.
To begin, many students have voiced their opinions and suggestions on the improvement of the services CAP provides for our students and the progress made has not been efficient enough to satisfy the needs of the students. As I am sure, the people in charge of CAP have an enormous workload, and I respect their efforts, and that is why I want to be able to help them address student concerns. I want to become a resource that fosters collaboration in order to ensure unity. The mental health of students is a priority that as a community should not be taken lightly. I would like to suggest implementing a system of students helping other students. This innovative peer-based system would allow students to sign up and help other students in need: this can consist of both of listening to their issues or simply have someone to chat with. I am aware that students do not have a license to offer advice which is what CAP’s counselors provide. However, it is easier for students to talk to students who may know what they are going through, and there are also more students than counselors on campus to provide help. I know that students are willing to help out in this because the UC Merced community is there for each other which I have seen and experienced at first hand. I will work diligently to resolve this issue!
Another issue I would like to tackle while being senator is the improvement of the food options that our school provides. I have seen many issues while being in these spaces that should be changed immediately. Many students rely on the food that is given in the Yablokoff- Wallace Dining Center and the Pavillion because that is their only source of food on campus. There should under no circumstances be insects in the food that is given as this can be hazardous to the health of students. The options should also be changed often because all students deserve a good meal after finishing a long day of arduous clases. I am not stating that there should be a huge shift in our options, but different meals may be crafted by utilizing the same ingredients. I commend the efforts of the Pavilion Administrators, but I believe new policies would greatly benefit the campus.
The workers that help keep our campus clean deserve to be recognized, appreciated, and provided the same benefits as students receive. These employees help keep our facilities clean for our personal well being and they should be given the support that they deserve. As a member of the Labor Commision organization on campus, members have voiced their concerns to me and it is imperative we address these crucial grievances in an expedited fashion to ensure safe and fair conditions for our workers!. I would like to implement weekly or monthly meetings with the workers on campus and with ASUCM to provide an opportunity to discuss their concerns. I am truly passionate about running for Senate, and I hope to bring change to our fantastic campus!