Students who attended the SGA presidential debates should know their candidates a lot better now.
The SGA presidential debates Wednesday night helped the students in attendance get acquainted with presidential candidates Jacob Scott and Cody Beyers. The debate hosted by SGA and The Griffon News let the two candidates react to each others policies and plans for next year.
One of the main topics that the debate gravitated toward was the transparency of SGA’s nearly half-a-million dollar budget, something Beyers wants to do if elected. Beyers said that his analysis of the budget took 25-26 hours.
“There’s no reason that someone should have to take 25-26 hours to study a piece of paper and figure out what happened to their money,” Beyers said.
He also wants to cut the travel budget for SGA members and make those funds available for students to request from the Financial Oversight Committee.
“They’re not spending enough of the students’ money. It’s the students’ money, and they’re hoarding it,” Beyers said.
Scott said the he also wants to increase the amount of funding to FOC so students who wish to travel for academic reasons can do so.
Leadership skills also seemed to be a key point that the candidates were brought back to. Scott, current Executive Vice President for SGA defended his experience when Beyers said that his experience stemmed from him being a Golden Griffon.
“I want to be very real with you for a second,” Scott said. “I come from a very different perspective, okay. I had a 19 ACT score when I came to Missouri Western and I didn’t have any scholarships, okay. So I’m not a Golden Griffon Scholar, but what I did from day one is I worked extremely hard and I’ve got a very good GPA—I’ve got a 3.8 GPA—and I achieved everything through hard work and being involved and doing those things”
Scott said he wants to ensure that Western students have the same opportunity to achieve through hard work, especially facing the University’s shrinking budget.
After the debate Senator Brian Shewell said that since he serves on Senate he can’t endorse a candidate, but that he felt both candidates are going to be good. Shewell felt that Scott did the best job debating.
“You could really tell when he was up there he was really passionate—I’m not saying that Cody wasn’t, Cody did just a phenomenal job—you could just see the passion in his eyes that he really wants this,” Shewell said.
The election will take March 6-7. Students will be able to vote online via a link on the Missouri Western home page.
Photos by Jason Brown