The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

SGA Announces 2024-25 Student Body President, Vice President Election Results

Printed with permission of Elsa O’Brien and Harshitha Talasila

Colgate University’s Student Government Association (SGA) announced the 2024-25 presidential and vice presidential election results via email on Wednesday, April 19. The student body elected junior Elsa O’Brien as president and sophomore Harshitha Talasila to continue her role as vice president.

While O’Brien has been heavily involved on campus, she sees the presidency as her most prominent role to date. O’Brien provided context to her feelings about the election results.

“I’ve been involved in the leaderships of various student organizations since my first semester at Colgate, so to receive such a visible position felt like a full circle moment, so to speak,” O’Brien said. “But, on the other hand, I am aware of the responsibility that comes with it. I really want to do the right thing for our Colgate community, and I’m ready to put in the hard work.”

Talasila, who also served as the 2023-24 SGA vice president, shared O’Brien’s excitement for the next year. Talasila provided some insight into what she wants to accomplish next year, especially programs that continue what she started this year. Talasila’s work is focused on the slogan C.H.A.N.G.E., which stands for community, honesty, accessibility, nurturing, growth and environmental sustainability.

“I want to work on creating more opportunities for students to engage with local businesses and the community. It will help to make the campus feel more like home,” Talasila said. “This past year, I worked on the food market trips, which are free trips to the various grocery stores in Cazenovia and Syracuse. I would like to continue this and really expand the program to better tailor it to the needs of the students.”

Talasila’s platform aims to create connections not only with local businesses but other academic institutions in the area, as well. This is another goal Talasila started work on this year and will carry into the next.

“We also just had our first NY-6 SGA Leadership Conference, and I’m hoping to keep that going and continue to expand Colgate’s connections in the Central New York area,” Talasila said. “This next year is about building a stronger sense of community and giving students the opportunity for personal, academic and career growth.”

O’Brien also shared her focus for the upcoming academic year, again centered on the topics she discussed extensively while campaigning.

“In addition to continuing to hold conversations in SGA meetings — which everyone is welcome to — about the imperfections within Colgate, it also means doing a lot more outreach to the rest of the student body, whether that be through events, tabling or open forums,” O’Brien said. “I hope to work alongside student body members, SGA members and administrators to actually create impactful solutions. Those that know the problem best should be included in creating the solution.”

O’Brien felt that SGA should be as accessible as possible and work as a problem-solving body for the students that elected them, especially smaller and sometimes underrepresented groups on campus.

“I hope that through intentional outreach strategies, events and making the SGA an easily reachable body, we can hear all those issues and improve them,” O’Brien said.

Current SGA president and senior Jonathan Eaton expressed his confidence in the new leadership and shared a message intended for current students.

“I’m excited to see the many great things [O’Brien] and [Talasila] can do with SGA next year,” Eaton said. “I ask each of you to put your trust in them to improve this campus and, by virtue, your experience on it.”

O’Brien and Talasila officially assume their new positions after the last day of classes in May.

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About the Contributor
Emma McCartan
Emma McCartan, Assistant News Editor
Emma McCartan is a sophomore from Guilford, CT majoring in international relations with a minor in Middle Eastern and Islamic studies. She has previously served as a staff writer for the News section. On campus, Emma is involved in Model United Nations.

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