Blue Devils United had the opportunity to meet with all of the candidates for Duke Student Government President, Executive Vice President and SOFC Chair. We were pleased by the candidates’ support for BDU and our ongoing initiatives.

For the position of DSG President, we believe that Keizra Mecklai will best represent BDU’s interests. Mecklai has continuously proven herself as an ally and advocate on behalf of Duke’s LGBTQ community. Her experiences include working with BDU to make the annual North Carolina Pride parade more accessible to the student body and passing legislation supporting a check-box LGBTQ identity question for undergraduate admissions. Thus, we are very confident that Mecklai will continue to fight for our community and its distinct needs going forward.

We also appreciated Tucker Albert’s awareness of BDU’s unique funding situation. As a large cultural group without any guaranteed annual funding, we were glad to hear that Albert understands our concerns.

For the EVP position, BDU endorses John Guarco. We were particularly impressed by Guarco’s ambition to expand the role from not only focusing on DSG internal affairs but also tuning into the broader scope of activism happening around campus. This plan, in addition to his relationships with key administrators in student affairs, made us believe that Guarco is the best candidate for the position.

For SOFC Chair, we are most confident in Apara Sivaraman. Sivaraman stood out from her opponents in prioritizing SOFC’s transparency and her sensitivity to the funding circumstances of our organization. BDU has had a series of budgets for community-building events denied by SOFC under the rationale that our proposed events were irrelevant to our organization’s mission. While we find this rationale insensitive to the needs of Duke’s LGBTQ community, Sivaraman communicated to us that she supports funding events of this nature. We believe that SOFC under Sivaraman’s leadership will become a more equitable group with a stronger commitment to diversity.

Blue Devils United