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Forks Estate: USG Tempe Candidate Hanna Salem on the issues her ticket covers

Hanna Salem answers questions about the six key policy initiatives she hopes to implement


Illustration published on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019.

Podcaster Nolan Williams sits down with USGT Presidential candidate, Hanna Salem, who currently serves as the Director of Civic Engagement. Salem talks about her platform and the experience her ticket brings to this election. If you want more information on their campaign, you can visit their website or Facebook page

Nolan Williams: Voting begins on March 26 for the Arizona State Student Government. Tempe campus students have three tickets to pick from, and I sat down with Hanna Salem to hear her pitch. 

Hanna Salem: My name is Hanna Salem, I’m a junior studying public service, public policy, minoring in women and gender studies and civic and economic thought and leadership, and I’m incredibly honored to be running for undergraduate student government president.

Nolan Williams: Excellent, tell me about your ticket. 

Hanna Salem: My ticket prides themselves off the fact that we are qualified and passionate individuals. We crafted a ticket that we thought was going to be committed and get work done during our time in office, if we were to be elected. I’ve been involved with undergraduate student government since freshmen year, starting out as an intern and now serving as the director of civic engagement. 

Nikki Tran is running for Vice President of Services. She previously served in that role and is USGT President. Trey Leveque is extremely involved on campus through the business school and the Next Generation Service corps, and has a good grasp of policy as he had a summer internship in DC as well as currently works at the Arizona State Capital. 

Nola Williams: First things first, tell us about your platform. 

Hanna Salem: My ticket created six platforms. We made sure we created initiatives that were all already in the works and that we saw that students really wanted to see to come into fruition by the end of the school year.

We have six platforms: civic engagement, fiscal responsibility, safety and support, menstrual equity, sustainability and professional development. For civic engagement we have a very high voter turnout for the ASU student body. We have about 58% voter turnout for the 2016 election. We want to increase those numbers by creating a civic engagement university board and committee. That way we would have representatives from all four ASU campuses present in this committee, and we would be able to advocate for ballot centers on all four campuses as well as add voter registration sessions to student orientations. 

For fiscal responsibility we want to make the appropriations process as simple as possible for students by adding a director of finance position. They would be the liaison between the student body president and the senate appropriations committee. They would alleviate a lot of the backlog work from the Senate Appropriations committee and just making that process more collaborative. 

For professional development we are working on getting a fee waiver for a grad school test, because we want to make sure that we are supporting students not only in their undergrad but what they prepare to do after ASU. 

Nolan Williams: How much do you predict that will cost?

Hanna Salem: That is something an executive ticket prior to ours has already kind of put in the works. We would have a fee waiver application. It would just depend on how many students want to go to grad school. As well as what the logistics are in ordering bulk tests. This is a conversation that we need to have not only with our students and figuring out the numbers of how many students want to go to grad school, but what the cost is of tests in bulk. 

We also have a menstrual equity platform that the ASU administration is already working on. We want to push our advocacy for it and provide menstrual hygiene products in all bathrooms. So our plan for this year is kind of creating a pilot program and seeing which restrooms need the most menstrual hygiene products, and see which restrooms are the most high traffic, how we’re going to fund it and how they’re going to be restocked. 

Then we have sustainability. We want to make sure that we’re mandating that the dining halls and the on-campus restaurants to having compostable, recyclable, zero waste materials, and in accordance if clubs want to host a zero waste event we’ll be able to appropriate more money to them as a way of saying thank you for supporting our mission of sustainability and ASU’s mission of sustainability. 

Nolan Williams: Tell me what it is about the experiences your ticket has in Student Government that makes you a good choice for this role. 

Hanna Salem: I think something we have to our advantage is that because we’ve served in so many different roles in undergraduate student government, we all have a very good knowledge of how the process works. Nikki and I were both directors, Nikki is currently an executive, Carla Naranjo was previously a senator, so we have knowledge on all sectors within student government. 

And we kind of made our platforms as realistic as possible. 

Nolan Williams: Remember to vote on March 26th and March 27th, you can find information about the elections here.

For the State Press, I’m Nolan Williams.

Editors Note: A previous version of this article misspelled a name, it has been updated to reflect the correct spelling.

Reach the reporter at and on Twitter @NolanWilliamsAZ

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