Director of Elections Elliot Gardner announced that Mitchell Rosenberg and Arianna Ngnomire were elected president and vice president of student government March 14.
Although student government candidates don’t run on official tickets, Rosenberg ran alongside Alex Ballard, the speaker of senate, while Ngnomire ran alongside Jackie Palacios, a student organizations senator and diversity affairs chair. Ngnomire is president of Black Student Union, and has no prior student government experience.
This year’s election drew 26 percent of eligible Chapman voters, Rosenberg said, while last year’s election saw 15 percent voter turnout. Out of about 1,700 voting students, Rosenberg garnered 54 percent of the votes for president, while Ngnomire drew 55 percent of the votes for vice president, said current vice president Sarah Tabsh.
After winners delivered speeches and cut the cake, some students rushed to console Ballard, the runner-up vice presidential candidate. Ballard declined to be interviewed.
“I’m humbled and honored to be re-elected,” Rosenberg said. “My first reaction is that I ran with (Alex) and I think he would bring a tremendous amount to student government. The student body elected myself and Arianna, and I think over the next few days we’ll probably have some conversations about what that will look like and start to work toward the future.”
Rosenberg, who said he will be the first two-term student government president, said that he wants to continue working on the new mental health system he helped implement.
Though Rosenberg and Ngnomire disagreed at the student government debate March 8 over Rosenberg’s email three days prior about an active shooter presentation, Rosenberg said next year, some of his first steps will include seeing what Ngnomire wants to bring to student government.
“I don’t know exactly what that first day is going to look like, but I’m excited to see,” he said.
Ngnomire said that hearing the director of elections say her name was a surprise.
“New possibilities opened up for what I see the future of Chapman as,” Ngnomire said. “I want to carry on what Jackie (Palacios) wants. I want to make sure that that we get multicultural Greek life on campus, that we are sustainable and transparent.”
Ngnomire also said she wants students to feel heard, and she wants to encourage students to run for senate.
Palacios, whose platform included free testing for sexually transmitted diseases, diversity panels, accessibility and campus safety, said that the election results were surprising.
“I don’t think student government really has ever had an election with a split ticket before,” Palacios said. “But I think both teams were so capable of offering so much great change, so the students couldn’t really have gone wrong.”
Jack Eckert contributed to this report.
Correction: An earlier version of this story reported an inaccurate percentage of student voters in the 2017 student government presidential election. This information has been corrected.