Rivera delivers Spring 2017 State of Campus address following tumultuous Senate meeting Monday night

By Delaney Vetter | March 28, 2017 3:43pm

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ASUP President Brandon Rivera gave the State of Campus address Monday night. Photo courtesy of Stephanie Tucker/ASUP.

ASUP President Brandon Rivera gave the State of the Campus address Monday night following the Senate meeting in St. Mary’s.

The theme for this year’s speech was “Vision Based” — Rivera reflected on his term as President but said, “we have started to focus on the future.” This was especially poignant given that the announcement had just come out that his opponents for ASUP President and Vice President next year had been disqualified, and he will be reelected so long as 10 percent of the student body votes in the runoff election on which he and running mate John Akers are the only option.

In the speech, Rivera emphasized the “revitalization” of ASUP that he aimed to carry out this year, saying that his actions were not focused on “temporary visions,” but ones that will be impactful for years down the road. He said that ASUP worked hard this year to “lift the roots of the old campus culture” and work to make a safer, more inclusive campus.

While he admitted there is still a ways to go, he said he is proud of the steps that ASUP has made this year.

He listed the accomplishments from the past year that he is most proud of, including the sexual assault stand-in event that ASUP helped to coordinate, the “strides” made towards awareness of mental health issues through events like Fresh Check Day and the newly-passed Resolution 17-02.

He also expressed excitement for the new Dundon-Berchtold Hall, which he said will offer much needed classroom space and, hopefully, slowly reduce the number of night classes so students can get more involved with causes outside their classes. Rivera also said he believes The Center for Ethics will be beneficial to the community.

Rivera got choked up towards the end of his speech, while thanking fellow Senate members who, he said, were with him through the highs and lows of the year and whom he considers to be family.

“You all have two hands, to help yourself and to help others,” Rivera told the Senate. “Go into any situation with a positive attitude.”

As a closing remark, Rivera recited a favorite quote: “Think about the opportunity, not the obligation.”

“State of the Campus was tough to deliver,” Rivera told The Beacon afterwards, reflecting on Apenyo and Sherman’s disqualification. “I think I let my emotion pour out and I didn’t mean for that to happen, it was just such an emotionally drained past week and a half.”

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