Meet the Candidates

from the Class of 2025
 

Academic Affairs

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Caroline Cornett

Running for: Academic Affairs

Hi all! I'm a freshman from Chattanooga, TN, hoping to major in Econ or Pubpol. As your Academic Affairs Senator, I would 1) work to improve the registration and class selection process; 2) find and promote freshman friendly research opportunities; and 3) advance opportunities for domestic Duke In study away programs!

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Charlie Blocksidge

Running for: Academic Affairs

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Dennis Wu

Running for: Academic Affairs

Hi Blue Devils! I’m Dennis, a freshman and a physics major enjoying solving problems and serving our community. I am learning how electromagnetic fields and Condorcet voting methods work, but I also have ideas on how the academic system at Duke can be significantly improved to address our problems, such as stress and career planning. Wants your voice heard and problems resolved? Dennis Wu is right for you!

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Ishaan Brar

Running for: Academic Affairs

HI Guys! Ny name is Ishaan Brar and I am running for Academic Affairs! I am from Bakersfield, CA and in my free time, I love analyzing movies, reading, hiking, and going on trips with friends! I have lots of experience creating opportunites and pushing for equity, especially in educational spaces, and I look to bring my experiences to Duke by improving classroom accessibility, improve and expand CAPS and other mental health services, and improving faculty student community interactions. 

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Jax Nalley

Running for: Academic Affairs

I am running for Academic Affairs Senator to help build a more student-centered culture at Duke. I have deep experience in policy leadership, having worked in immigration reform, student leadership initiatives, and my state’s Department of Education. I’m DSG, I’ll put those skills to work to advocate for improved access to financial aid advising, flexibility with mental health days, and and major-conscious course registration. Follow @jax4dsg for updates and platform details.

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Katie Kotler 

Running for: Academic Affairs

Hi everyone! I'm Katie, and I am running to be a DSG Senator within the Academic Affairs committee. As senator, my goal is to simply listen to YOU (and to act on feedback and ideas from the Class of 2025). In this role, I hope to help create an academic environment welcoming to all students by increasing opportunities, reinforcing and creating academic support networks, and expanding and improving available resources. I hope you will consider voting for me for AA this Thursday, September 9! 

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Kyle Coaker

Running for: Academic Affairs

Hello Blue Devils! As an Academic Affairs Senator, I will strive to provide novel opportunities to increase academic engagement and inclusivity. I hope to provide guidance through research mentoring and professionalism workshops, allowing students to work alongside distinguished faculty. Four-year course planning for all career choices is a program I am keen to accomplish through upper class mentor connections, and I will always be open to new suggestions to support Duke’s academic mission!

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Neil Upreti

Running for: Academic Affairs

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Nicholas Sangvai

Running for: Academic Affairs

Hellloo everyone!! My name is Nicholas Sangvai and I am from Durham, NC. I am passionate about making the academic experience one where everyone feels they can succeed. I hope to push for four-year academic-planning seminars, making class more accessible for those who cannot come in-person, and hosting academic exploration workshops (you never know, you may discover your new passion/dream job!). I'm always willing to listen to any ideas you have, and I hope to represent the class of 2025!

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Rodrigo Bassi Guerreiro

Running for: Academic Affairs

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Campus Life

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Alex Dray

Running for: Campus Life

To make this year as fun and normal as possible, I ran for DSG. We have been through a lot, so I think we deserve to enjoy ourselves. Thus, I want to improve campus life by making the C1 run faster (by saying once there are two buses at a stop, then the bus in front must leave), increasing variety at Marketplace (adding more sauces at the pasta station or ice cream), and opening up Brodie. I served on student government in HS, teaching me to advocate for change. To learn more, follow @Dray4Duke!

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Alex Wang

Running for: Campus Life

Hey everyone! My name is Alex Wang and I am running to serve as DSG Senator on the Campus Life Committee. I would be honored to represent the Class of 2025 if elected. As a senator, I hope to propose increasing student input to any changes to Duke’s COVID-19 policies, adding more variety and rotation to Marketplace meals, improving the bus system, and holding more fun events on East Campus. Follow @alexwang4dsg on Instagram for more updates, and don’t forget to vote Alex Wang for Campus Life!

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Daniella Andres

Running for: Campus Life

Hi guys! My name is Dani and I'm from Winston Salem, NC. I would love to be part of this committee and to organize activities for all of you guys!! I plan in working to create a more united and engaged social community within our campus. For instance, I would like to host another carnival for the class of 2025 to give us another chance to get to meet each other. I would greatly appreciate your vote!!
!!!!!! VOTE 4 DANI ;) !!!!!!

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David "Dave" Surzykiewicz

Running for: Campus Life

My mission is simple: BELIEVE IN THE PEOPLE WHO BELIEVE IN YOU. That means it would be my goal and my honor to stand up for the things that are meaningful to YOU, YOUR ideas, YOUR dream campus. We study in an amazing place filled with amazing people; it is my goal to make our dreams come true. My email, phone number, and social media will be open to you, anytime, for what you want done. I like long walks with my dog, and I have a scar on my left knee from when I fall off a dock to feed a duck. 

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Dev Shah

Running for: Campus Life

I’m Dev Shah, and I'm running for DSG!

As Senator, I’ll work to institute the changes that’ll benefit my peers. To name some, I plan to improve the bus system by having more buses at peak times and convenient locations. Also, I’ll work to get a post office and Amazon lockers on East. Lastly, I hope to provide an enhanced Marketplace dining experience, in terms of food options and efficiency. 

If elected, I promise to hear your ideas and do my best to implement solutions!

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Elena Karas

Running for: Campus Life

Hey Hey! My name is Elena Karas and I'm running to represent you in DSG as a Senator of Campus Life! This year is very special in that we have the unique opportunity to change the course of campus life here at Duke. If elected, I promise to do everything in my power to make YOUR voices heard and create the change YOU want to see in your campus experiences. To learn more about my goals for this year, feel free to check out my campaign instagram @elena4dsg 

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Joy Buchi

Running for: Campus Life

Hey everyone! I’m Joy Buchi, a first-year living in Blackwell, and I’m running for a DSG Senator of Campus Life this year! One of the most fulfilling things for me this year so far has been getting to know our class of ‘25, whether through the bus convos and Marketplace lines. Feel free to come up to/email me and ask about the ideas I have; I can’t wait to see all the amazing things our class accomplishes together, and it would be an honor to represent you all! :-))

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Karen Xu

Running for: Campus Life

Hi everyone! My name is Karen and I'm running for the Campus Life Committee of DSG. Some quick things about me: I'm from Northern Virginia, I'm in the marching band, and in my free time, I enjoy taking photos, working out, and exploring Durham.
Some ideas I have to build community and make this a memorable year despite being in a pandemic include adding lighting to outdoor dining spaces, increasing COVID-19 and testing transparency from the school, and bringing Duke @ Nite events to East Campus.

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Kasey Park 

Running for: Campus Life

Hi! I’m Kasey, with a K. Many of us can attest to the idea that what makes Duke, Duke, is its people– it’s those like me and you. Even with the occasional inter-dorm bench stealing or hate on Trinity, all of us have an unrivaled sense of community down here at East Campus. It’s this community which makes me excited to run for senator on the Campus Life Committee. As a senator, I'll be able to contribute to the programs and events that build up the best aspect of our university and home. 

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Lauren Valle

Running for: Campus Life

Hey everyone! My name is Lauren Valle, and I’m running to be your next First-Year Campus Life Senator! My aim is to make Duke not only a home for all of you, but a place that encourages your success as well. To achieve this, I have three main goals: improvement, community, and accessibility (check out more at @lv4dsg). I care greatly about student life, Duke, and making it a better place for all of you, so I hope you’ll consider voting for me when ballots open this Thursday at noon! #lv4dsg

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Michael Cronin

Running for: Campus Life

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Nathan Sinclair 

Running for: Campus Life

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Neha Shaw

Running for: Campus Life

Neha is from Houston, TX and is beyond excited to be part of Duke's Class of 2025! Her passions lie in global health, and she enjoys hiking, reading, and making people laugh. Neha is running for Campus Life because of her love for all of the wonderful people she has already met at Duke and her desire to continually improve life and the college transition for those around her. She is eager to get to know everyone and appreciates your support!

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Sam Sheekey 

Running for: Campus Life

Hi my name is Sam Sheekey (she/her) and I am running for Campus Life! One of the reasons why I chose Duke was because of its community and spirit. I’ll work hard to improve the quality of life for our class on East Campus including more outdoor seating, longer Marketplace hours and alternative exercise areas. Additionally, to all my fellow gappers I would work to bring us all together soon! I will be more than responsive to any ideas from the class of 2025, so please do not be afraid to say hi! 

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Talia Granick

Running for: Campus Life

Hi, everyone! I am dedicated to advocating for all Campus Life improvements you guys want to see. As a Senator, I strive to encourage Clubs to move away from having applications, making extracurricular culture more inclusive. I want to revamp Duke Groups, helping students take advantage of any and every opportunity available to them. Finally, I will lobby for more East to West buses and more bus organization at peak times. 

Durham and Community Affairs

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Avijit Singh

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

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Carson Carranza

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

My name is Carson Carranza, and I'm running for Senator of Durham Community Affairs. I intend to pursue an initiative for DSG to partner with "Reach Out and Read,” which will focus on supporting the long-term academic development of Durham’s low-income children by emphasizing critical reading skills. Additionally, I have immense experience in student advocacy because I served as Regional Director on the California Association of Student Leaders State Board and as a public schools Board Member.

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Cassie (Cassandra) Ameen

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

I want to make community service accessible and impactful. I plan to start a program that gets our student athletes more involved in local youth athletic programs, especially in underprivileged communities. I plan to create a biweekly newsletter to advertise all upcoming service events that are open to everyone. This means being able to help the community in a noncommittal and nonselective way. If you have a packed schedule, but still want to help the community when you can, this is a solution.

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Chloe Decker

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

HEY DUKIES, VOTE 4 CHLO! If elected, Chloe will combine positivity and experience to lead Duke in impacting Durham in a BIG WAY. Chloe will facilitate:
 

  • Local arts partnerships

  • Create an O-week chat about Durham's history

  • Start a program for 1st-years to sample Duke's service orgs


...and more! As a BN Duke Scholar and a lifelong resident of NC, Chloe will prioritize policy that allows students to make their mark on their new home. Now gooo VOTE 4 CHLO! 

To learn more: @chloe.christyne on IG

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Colin Roberts

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

My name is Colin Roberts and I’m from St. Paul, Minnesota. I like to spend most of my free time in the outdoors—running, golfing, and exploring state and national parks!

If elected to the Durham and Community Affairs Committee, I’m hoping to lessen the gap that exists between Duke and the surrounding Durham community. I will focus on a three-prong approach, concentrating on education, service, and community engagement that you can find out more about on my instagram @robertsfordsg!

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Emma Zubak

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

"I'm committed to making the Duke-Durham relationship diverse, dynamic, dependable, devoted, and distinguished. Here are some ideas I have to do so! 

  • Develop partnerships w/ variety of organizations and businesses 

  • Institute bonding activities between Duke students and members of Durham community

  • Host regular meetings w/ local leaders 

  • Create and leverage network of colleges around state and country 

  • Implement program where students can utilize food points at restaurants 

Thank you so much!! :)."

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Laurin Potter

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

Hi! My name is Laurin Potter and I am from Winston-Salem, NC. I look forward to the opportunity to strengthen the connection between our university and Durham as one of your DSG Senators of Durham and Community Affairs. 

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Luke Rubin

Running for: Durham and Community Affairs

I'm very excited for the opportunity to represent you as a Senator on the Durham & Community Affairs Committee in DSG and help to better integrate Duke with our local community through increased volunteering opportunities and greater exposure at Duke to all that Durham has to offer. I also plan on exploring ways to best utilize Duke's resources to help communities most affected by COVID.

Equity and Outreach

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Clay Thornton

Running for: Equity and Outreach

Hi everyone! You might be wondering, why am I the right person for Equity and Outreach? First, I have experience leading many equity initiatives at my high school. Second, I have big ideas, including emphasizing intersectionality and promoting a student culture that embraces social justice. Third, I am truly passionate about serving the needs of our community and working to make Duke more equitable for everyone. Check out more on my Instagram page, @clayfordsg. I hope you consider voting for me!

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Dani Tejada

Running for: Equity and Outreach

Hi! My name is Dani Tejada, and I come from South Florida. This year, I will be running for Senator of the Equity and Outreach Committee. As a member of both the LatinX/Hispanic and Afro-Caribbean communities, ensuring equality for minority groups has always been a passion of mine. If elected, I promise to dedicate myself every day to promoting education about the culture of the various minority groups on campus, and ensure campus is a safe and inclusive environment for everyone at Duke. 

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Felix Jones

Running for: Equity and Outreach

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Gaby Pereda

Running for: Equity and Outreach

Hi Class of 2025 :)
My name is Gaby Pereda and I am running to improve Duke through the position of Senator of Equity & Outreach. As Senator, I vow to ameliorate Duke's diversity and inclusion efforts through 3 major initiatives: 
1. Diversifying our teaching staff
2. Starting monthly campus-wide diversity celebration events
3. Creating an anonymous survey where students can report incidents of 
inequity at Duke to Adm
Please reach out with questions (gcp15@duke.edu) 

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Gus Gress

Running for: Equity and Outreach

Vote Gus Gress for Progress in this DSG Senate Election! As a student on financial aid, I understand what needs fixing in Duke’s aid processes and can work with Duke staff to bring greater financial equity to students. On the Equity & Outreach Committee, I can accurately represent the wants and needs of all Duke freshmen, because I stay engaged with a variety of student organizations and populations. Hop on the Bus with Gus, and vote Gus Gress for Progress!

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Heather Raslan 

Running for: Equity and Outreach

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Hillary Okpeseyi

Running for: Equity and Outreach

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Lauren Glusman

Running for: Equity and Outreach

If elected as your Equity and Outreach senator, I will work to create a climate where everyone is listened to, validated, and supported based on their unique identity and experiences. I will encourage discussions that build awareness and perspective and lead to personal growth. I will advocate for rights and engage in policy-making to create a more inclusive and just environment. Finally, I will be an empathetic and uplifting senator who sets a tone of acceptance and embraces others.

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Kelly Padalino

Running for: Equity and Outreach

Hi everyone! My name is Kelly Padalino and I am from Potomac, Maryland. I am dedicated to making Duke a welcoming, accepting, and diverse community. I have extensive experience and training in reviewing policies and practices at institutions in order to make them more inclusive and equitable. As a Senator, I would like to increase equity training for students, ensure equity of experience in residential life, and listen to my peers in order to make everyone feel like they belong at Duke. 

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Kunmi Ojo

Running for: Equity and Outreach

Hi guys, my name is Kunmi Ojo and I would love to be a senator on the Equity and Outreach Committee. 

Equity is ensuring that the same quality of resources are accessible to everyone at the same “cost.”
To me, outreach means working with the Durham community to ensure that all students are supported academically, emotionally, socially, financially, and mentally. 

Through DSG, I hope to work with staff, faculty, and fellow students to create and strengthen programs to help all students thrive. 

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Naggena Ohri

Running for: Equity and Outreach

I’m a first-year running for the Equity & Outreach committee. A little bit about me: I’m from Southern MD, I intend to study economics at Duke, and I have a passion for student advocacy. My past efforts for equity include serving on my local County Board of Education where I advocated for the drafting and implementation of a new countywide Equity Policy. If elected, I hope to get involved with similar efforts. You can check out more details on my campaign on instagram @naggena4dsg!

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Priyanshi Ahuja

Running for: Equity and Outreach

I'm Priyanshi Ahuja. My interests lie at the intersection of public policy and STEM/technology. I understand that identity is a context-dependent spectrum. I hope to hear from you and understand your context. My past experience with equity/outreach include working as student body president of 4000+. I was on the outreach team for a United Nations CTAD Youth Network initiative and led workforce equity initiatives.

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Thang Lian

Running for: Equity and Outreach

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Zara Thalji 

Running for: Equity and Outreach

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Services and Sustainability

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Alyssa Ting

Running for: Services and Sustainability

No description provided

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Kristina Wong

Running for: Services and Sustainability

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N Wang

Running for: Services and Sustainability

In a no-man's-land between the COVID and post-COVID world, Duke's services have lacked consistency in their capacity for demand. If you vote for me, I will do my utmost to make every service easier for Duke students to use and ensure that sustainability and environmental policies make the Duke campus greener while also preserving student accessibility and ease-of-use in Duke services.

More information about my platform and plans: ElectNWang.org

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Theodore Hur

Running for: Services and Sustainability

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