On Thursday, April 7, the Association of Amherst Students (AAS) will hold elections for president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, and Judiciary Council chair. The students below have announced their candidacies for these elections. Students who are interested in hearing from these candidates, or are interested in running but were unable to submit a candidate statement, should attend Speech Night on Wednesday, April 6, at 7 p.m. in Johnson Chapel.
All candidates are listed by position then alphabetically by last name.
Sirus Wheaton ’23
Hey, I’m Sirus and I’m running for AAS President. These are some of the activities I have been involved with here:
- President of the Black Student Union
- Senator for Class of 2023
- Diversity Outreach Intern
- Black Minds Matter Walkout
- College Council Member
- Anti Racism Committee
- Free Hygiene Supply Initiative
- Integrate Amherst, Reclaim Amherst, Amherst Acts
- Club Soccer Captain
Amherst hasn’t always been the amazing place that I hoped and wanted it to be. Constantly demanding and instilling change within both the administration and student community is the only way we can actualize the diverse and inclusive campus we were promised.
Michael Xu ’25
To be honest, I have zero experience with student government — not even as elementary school treasurer. But I do have experience connecting with you, the Amherst community. And, most importantly, I can promise to be real. Through laughing, eating, and balling with y’all, I’ve developed this unwavering belief that deep down, we are more the same than different. For me, the biggest obstacle to forming magical relationships is fear — fear of being rejected when reaching out. As president, I’ll focus my efforts on what matters most: human connection. I’ll accentuate what makes Amherst special for me: the TIGHTTT-knit feeling of community.
Taha Zafar Ahmad ’24
One of my favorite members of AAS, Basma, the current vice-president, is graduating. I have observed her maintaining the conduct of the Senate according to the agenda, and respected the manner in which she keeps the Senate organized in its conduct/proceedings. I wish to follow in her footsteps. Being a member of AAS is the most formative experience of my time at Amherst. I have taken on diverse roles including organizing transportation, being part of the Community Standards Review Board, organizing a blood drive, and would love to use my experiences to build a better Senate for Amherst students.
Jaden Richards ’25
The vice-president should be comfortable communicating student desires to administrators. A vice-president should increase the Senate’s effectiveness while also improving its engagement with the student body. I believe I can do both of these things. This year I served on four committees — more than the typical three; from working to approve new faculty to creating club budgets, I will always speak up for the student body. My term would have more Senate-sponsored events (and food!), a monthly recap of Senate activity, and committee leaders to collect student feedback and keep committees active. Vote for Jaden!!
Dania Hallak ’24
As Amherst transitions back to pre-Covid times, it’s important to have someone with the experience, dedication, and representation to guide the student body and Budgetary Committee (BC). I’ve been both an affinity/club leader requesting money and a BC member approving requests, and understand the complexity of funding. I’ve been a senator and BC member for two years. As treasurer, I want to better educate the student body on funding and request processes to BC/other administrational offices, alter policies to be equitable/considerate of affinity spaces and the changing times, and fund projects like Grammarly, Headspace, and FLI work compensation.
Alex Jabor ’23
Over my two terms I have seen JC’s potential to hold the Senate accountable and act in the student body’s interests. I have co-authored election reforms to increase transparency and expand voting rights, held a leading role in the recent complaint adjudication process and co-authored JC’s first judicial opinion in years. My leadership and legal experiences outside of JC, my passion for equity, and my dedication to the truth have prepared me to serve the Amherst community as an active JC chair. We must reform JC to ensure AAS reflects our values as an evolving student body.
Shreya Susan Mathew ’25
I am Shreya Susan Mathew, from Kerala, India. My senatorial experience since 2021 has helped me understand the expectations of our community and implement projects like providing Grammarly Premium memberships for all our students. I am now running for the position of Judicial Council chair because I wish to work towards holistic development focusing on the academic and social well-being of Amherst College. I believe that my diverse background and experience will be an asset in the decision-making component that comes with my role. I vow to be impartial, prudent, and empathetic in my responsibilities as the JC chair.
Lucas Romualdo ’24
The Judiciary Council is meant to be a check on the AAS Senate and e-board. In past years, JC has been passive, providing advice in the case of disputes. Having served on JC as a senator and on the e-board as secretary, that isn’t enough. JC needs to be proactive. We need a more thorough revision of the Constitution to promote student voice and accountability for AAS. We need a JC that is not on standby, but that actively pursues change. I have what it takes to make that change, to lead JC, to build a better constitution for AAS.