SC ELECTIONS REPORT: Aspiring SC President Rase on MDA 2019

Running unopposed as the next Student Council (SC) President is Yen Rase, who
hopes to make wonders come true with her plans of action.

According to Rase, after three years of serving Ateneo Law, she has been fortunate enough to meet, work with, and be friends with law students. She observed that students come from different backgrounds and each have their own advocacies such as environmental protection, mental health, gender equality, and the like. She realized that Ateneo Law students are not just academically competent but politically and socially conscious, and that there is so much untapped potential.

“If only the student body is more empowered, we can move and aim for greater heights. I realized that I am in the best position to lead and serve you through a relevant and relatable Student Council,” she added.

Her plans of action include well-rounded Atenean, empowered Ateneo community, relevant and relatable student council, and innovative projects — these she promised to attain through a compassionate and passionate SC, as well as magis in service.

During the Miting De Avance last April 25, 2019, Rase answered the allegation that people saw her during the last bar operations in November, shouting at student volunteers.

“I’m trying to recall every single instance and even asked my co-head Micco Pesueña and he said that there was no such instance. If there was any, it was only a guidance maybe on an upper tone of voice, but I didn’t shout… If it’s handling pressure, I am able to do that… feel free to ask anyone that I’ve worked with during bar operations,” Rase guaranteed.

The panel composed of Danica Evangelista, The Palladium Editor-in-Chief, Rob Escalante, SC President, and Mav Abata, CEJA Commisioner also asked Rase to comment on the orange tagging incident during the previous Orientation Seminar (OrSem).

She explained that this concerns the use of a different font color on the ID of affiliated student volunteers during OrSem to identify them as such.

“I asked OrSem heads Janine Chua and Benigno Enciso and I confirmed with them that it was a directive from [the] admin. As a past OrSem head, it was marked to delineate where affiliated people can only go to or access during enrollment,” she added.

However, Rase is of the opinion that such act quite overstepped some boundaries, “There should be some retrictions in some way in terms of communicating with [the] freshmen. We volunteer to welcome them to the community and not to recruit them. I know that volunteers should also be briefed about this, but in the same way, it was already overstepping to tag them. If I were to be president or to head either of the two candidates for 2nd yr batch rep, I would put a control to address the needs as necessary and not to the extent that you’re tagging them as affiliated or unaffiliated.”

Rase is hopeful that with the new school administration and a new set of SC officers composed of affiliated and unaffiliated students, the student body could trust them in discerning this matter in order to make it more conducive, welcoming and inclusive to everyone, regardless of their affiliation or organization.

On the use of SC funds, Rase explained that the money is evenly spread out to different activities depending on its reach and effect to the students. She cited previous activities, such as the ALS app which required Php 200,000; Mental Health Awareness, less than Php 100,000; and Bar Salubong, Php 240,000. She added that she is also planning to implement the Justice Relova Scholarship Fund, as mandated by the Student Council Constitution.

Rase’s plan to resolve the lack of student awareness on national issues did not escape the scrutiny of the audience. One of the students observed how the current SC has been silent on social issues, particularly on human rights violations under the Duterte administration and how Rase’s plan is limited to conducting surveys as to the student body’s stand through the ALS app.

“I’m not for the SC issuing a statement just by ourselves. We are representatives of every one of you. We really have to get the student body’s voice on this. If may Duterte supporter sa school, we can’t generalize that everyone in ALS is against Duterte. That’s already infringing on their opinion. We need to get the voice of the student body, made efficient with the use of the ALS app,” Rase justified.
However, she clarified that there has to be a criteria to determine which issues are really pressing, such that the statements would not have to be coursed through the student body.

“Even if you voted for us, you don’t lose the right to voice out, and we’re giving you the avenue to voice it out. May prioritization lang,” Rase explained.

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