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Uzoma Ayogu elected undergraduate Young Trustee

Senior Uzoma Ayogu was elected as the undergraduate Young Trustee Wednesday.

Ayogu received 1,311 votes, but was deducted 14 points for violating rules about East Campus flyers. He ended up with 1,297 votes, topping Steven Soto, who received 625 votes, Tanner Lockhead, who received 423 votes and Anya Ranganathan, who received 144 votes. 2,504 students voted in total this election.

“As was the case with last year’s elected Young Trustee, Jamal Edwards, Ayogu captured a majority of the votes based on first preference rankings alone,” wrote sophomore Sabriyya Pate, Duke Student Government’s attorney general, in an email.

Ayogu—a mechanical engineering major—co-founded The Releaf Group, an investment procurement platform that aims to make investing easier in Africa. He is also the Class of 2017 President for Engineering Student Government and chairs the Diversity and Inclusion Undergraduate Committee of Pratt School of Engineering.

"I feel extremely grateful," Ayogu told The Chronicle. "My team has been absolutely phenomenal. I couldn't have asked for anyone better to go to bat for me. It's pretty humbling to see all the people who supported me, from those who just took one class with me freshman year to people I've known all my years here."

Ayogu added that he respected all of the candidates running against him and was grateful for a clean race. The runner-ups echoed similar sentiments about the quality of the race and also congratulated Ayogu.

"It was a great race, and I am honored to have run alongside these candidates," Soto wrote in an email. "It was an incredible learning opportunity, and I am grateful to have met so many wonderful people during the campaign."

Ranganathan added she was confident Ayogu would contribute meaningfully to the Board of Trustees and that she wishes him all the best. Lockhead said that Ayogu was "deeply qualified" and would do an excellent job as Young Trustee.

Pate noted that the voting system had a minor glitch within the first hour of opening, causing voters to only be able to rank their first and second choices. However, this was quickly corrected, and it would not have impacted the results, she said. 

Ayogu was deducted points for having illicit flyers in three East Campus dorms—a minor infraction, Pate said. An unidentified member of another candidate's campaign team informed DSG of the infraction, she explained. 

A proposal to restructure the DSG Senate by reducing the number of committees from seven to five was passed with 51.22 percent of votes in favor. Students also passed a proposal to revamp the role of DSG’s executive vice president by a 68.47 percent in favor. 

Editor's note: This article was updated at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday to add quotes from Ayogu. 


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